The Yellow Wallpaper Analysis

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The women in William Faulkner’s A Rose for Emily and Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s The Yellow Wallpaper are troubled protagonists that have been neglected, isolated, and pushed to the point of insanity. There are many contributing factors to their decent into psychosis. Both women have lost their ability to function in society due to their obsessive behavior and the controlling men in their lives. Although both stories have similarities, there are also differences in their paths that have led to their mental breakdowns. During the Victorian era, women were considered the weaker gender. They were not taken seriously by the men due to women being too emotional. In Gilman’s The Yellow Wallpaper, the narrator is being treated as a child by…show more content…
This harsh treatment added to the instability of an awkward young woman. The community saw Miss Emily as a “monument” while she was alive, unknowing of the tortured life she had lived. She confined herself in the home not only with the memories of her father but also with the corpse of the man she had thought would remove her from the madness. Both women were living in homes that were once beautifully maintained, but through the years had been neglected. The Grierson home “was a big, squarish frame house that had once been … on our most select street” (Faulkner 714). The once beautiful home had become an “eyesore among eyesores” (Faulkner 714). Emily had not maintained the home as her father had. She would isolate herself in the home for long periods of time. Her seclusion was her way of keeping her madness hidden or possibly her way of controlling it. The narrator was confined to “a colonial mansion” (Gilman 956), but she was restricted to living in an “atrocious nursery” (Gilman 957) with the horrible yellow wallpaper that aided in her decent into madness. These homes were the vessels that held the women’s lunacy in place. They were both able to separate themselves from others and hide their…show more content…
The Grierson family had been a prestigious “monument” in the town for many years. After Mr. Grierson’s death, the community “could pity Miss Emily. Being left alone, and a pauper, she had become humanized” (Faulkner 716). Even though they felt pity for Emily, the town expected more of her and continued to judge her every move. Homer Barron was a way for her to rebel against the town’s expectations. Emily continued to “carry her head high enough-even when they [we] believed that she had fallen” (Faulkner 717). It was also a way for Emily to discard the hold her father had over her life. Knowing of the town’s disapproval of her interaction with Homer, Emily could assume that if her father had been alive, he would also be

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