The Yellow Wallpaper Symbolism Essay

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Annette Mise Professor Figeras ENC1102 February 11, 2015 Symbol of the Yellow Wallpaper Symbolism plays a very important role when it comes to reading any piece of literature. The author uses, and may repeat a couple of times the same symbol, which could be either an object or a reference to add what it could be a deeper meaning to the story. “The Yellow Wallpaper”, written by Charlotte Perkins Gilman, is a short story where the wallpaper is projected as the most significant symbol. The wallpaper is first stated in the title, and it can represent a variety of ideas or situations. As you read you start to notice how the narrator makes references to it and becomes more frequent as the story continues. The story is narrated by a nameless character, a young woman who seems to be experiencing post-partum depression. Taken by her husband to a summer house, and in there to a large room where she is supposed to rest, the narrator first observes the wallpaper and describes the color as an “unclean yellow” with curvy line patterns that “suddenly commit suicide”. The wallpaper has symbols within itself; the lines can represent the bars of a…show more content…
Gilman presents to us how the narrator feels like she is in the same position as the woman behind the bars: Imprisoned in her own house and with no scape; this due to the social expectations of women in the 19th century. At this point, the narrator has reached a level of irrationality that doesn’t let her differentiate reality from what her mind has created. She now believes she is the woman in the wallpaper, and thinks that there were other women who also escaped from it; —“I wonder if they all come out of that wallpaper like I did” (pg560). Filled by contentment due to her new found “freedom” the narrator starts to creep all around the room. John, the husband, walks in the room and faints as he sees the horrific

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