Themes In The Yellow Wallpaper

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Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s short story “The Yellow Wallpaper” is a masterwork that has withstood the test of time and given the readers and scholars of the world many themes to study. Some themes are more prominent than others, but all are as relevant today as when she first wrote the story in 1892. One such theme is the importance of self- expression and the dangers of not being able to express yourself in a healthy manner. If you read through the story, then you can see the many times that Gilman touches on this subject and you can see just how important it was and ultimately still is to this day a hundred and twenty years later. Throughout the story, you can see how her mental restraints, even more so than her physical restraints, cause Jane (the narrator) to go completely and…show more content…
We see her get closer and closer to the edge of the cliff and in the end, we see her fall off the steep cliff into insanity. The reason for her descent, as stated multiple times, is that Jane is not able to express herself and that is dangerous for anyone. Since she is not able to project herself in a healthy manner, she really begins to project onto the yellow wallpaper. This is really evident in a lot of places, like when she says this, “It dwells in my mind so! I lie here on this great immovable bed - it is nailed down, I believe - and follow that pattern about by the hour.” (Gilman, 664) and also “Life is very much more excltmg now than it used to be. You see I have something more to expect, to look forward to, to watch.” (Gilam, 667) Not only does she project onto the wallpaper, she also begins to become obsessed with it, which obsession rarely leads to anything good. It is sad to see a healthy person, like Jane, snap because she has no way to express herself freely. Everyone should be able to express themselves, because if they do not they might end up just like
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