The Story of an Hour by Kate Chopin and the Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Perkins Stetson were both written by women to express how they were treated in their time period. Both of these stories were criticized because they challenged the belief that a woman should not be just a docile wife. These two pieces of literature utilized symbolic imagery, repetition, and dramatic irony to convey the common theme shared that women are opressed by the standards of society. In Chopin's Story of an Hour, Mrs. Mallard sees the outside world through the only window in her room. It is described in detail, being a "delicious breath of rain". This imagery symbolizes her tears; her grief is the rain from the sky, but as it falls it brings "a breath of new spring …show more content…
The dramatic irony in that Mrs. Mallard died at the end is that is the only way she truly could be free. Even if her husband had actually died, she would still be confined by the rules of society and the expectations placed on her to mourn for the rest of her life. Society told her that she should act a certain way so even though she thought her life was her own, it was still dictated by the society she lived in. The Yellow Wallpaper was written with much more symbolism, but it still conveys a similar message to The Story of an Hour. The wallpaper is described many times throughout the story, presented almost exclusively as being very ugly, "repellent, almost revolting". It's yellow color symbolizes the way the narrator feels about her situation. "Unclean", "dull", "sickly" is how she may have felt deep down about her relationship with her husband and the life she lived under him. The wallpaper itself becomes a symbol for her. She uses it as a coping method and projects her feelings onto it and the woman she sees in it. The windows symbolize how she is trapped in this marriage and she can only view the beautiful outside through the many windows, reminding her of what she cannot have. Even though her husband reminds her of the
Click here to unlock this and over one million essaysShow More
The stories Their Eyes Were Watching God, by Zora Neale Hurston, “The Yellow Wallpaper,” by Charlotte Perkins Gilman, and “The Story of an Hour,” by Kate Chopin all center around three different women and their different life experiences. Each story also tells how the lives of these three women are affected by their husbands. The narrator of “The Yellow Wallpaper,” along with Janie and Mrs. Mallard each have different relationships with their husbands, but they each feel they are being controlled or oppressed by them. In Their Eyes Were Watching God, Janie’s story is told through her three marriages, all three with their own problems.
"The Story of an Hour ' ' by Kate Chopin and "The Yellow Wallpaper ' ' by Charlottle Perkins Gilman are short stories about women in the late 1800 's. In "The Story of an Hour" the woman is living in the city, her husband has gone off to work, she has a heart condition, and she has believed he was dead. The husband appears and she dies because her chance at freedom is lost. While "The Yellow Wallpaper" is in a country house on vacation. She is forced to play sick and is told she must rest by her husband and doctor. As a result she moves into madness believing the wallpaper has come alive.
At first it is seen as nothing but an old ruined wallpaper with a “bad” pattern. As the story progresses she stares at the paper for hours and sees a sub-pattern behind the main pattern, visible only in certain light. She hen sees a desperate woman trying to leave the wallpaper which shows how the women feel trapped. The author uses the yellow wallpaper as a symbol of the oppressive life that many women have today and back then.
(678) in this statement she is challenging herself and this shows the reader she is facing some confusion. The yellow wallpaper in the main characters (the narrator) bedroom is a major point in the story. The yellow wallpaper plays a major role in the woman’s insanity. The woman’s obsession with the wallpaper creates her problem and affects her mind and judgment. This is shown in, “It dwells on my mind so!”
Authors, especially female authors, have long used their writing to emphasize and analyze the feminist issues that characterize society, both in the past and the present. Kate Chopin, Charlotte Perkins Gilman, and Susan Glaspell wrote narratives that best examined feminist movements through the unreliable minds of their characters. In all three stories, “The Story of an Hour”, “The Yellow Wallpaper”, and “A Jury of Her Peers”, the authors use characterization, symbolism, and foreshadowing to describe the characters’ apparent psychosis or unreasonable behavior to shed light on the social issues that characterized the late 19th century and early 20th century. Penning many stories that demonstrate her opinions on the social issues of the era,
For instance, there is an understanding of the woman’s feelings as she describes “a recurrent spot where the pattern lolls like a broken neck and two bulbous eyes stare at you upside down” and the pattern looking at her “as if it knew what a vicious influence it had” (Gilman 437). The personification is symbolic in displaying how the woman felt as she was stuck in the lonely room with allowance of her husband and Jennie, their child’s nanny, keeping their eyes on her with the dependence of her healing. Additionally, the woman specifies that behind the yellow wallpaper she can see “a strange, provoking, formless sort of figure, that seems to sulk about behind that silly and conspicuous front design” (Gilman 438). As the appearance of the wallpaper is personified, the author taps into the hidden meaning that the woman’s sickness is taunting her as she is attempting to heal. In the end, readers are given the most significant piece of personification in the statement, “and then when the sun came and that awful pattern began to laugh at me, I declared that I would finish it today!”
The narrator is a woman who is imaginative trying to make her mind think and realize the meaning of the yellow wallpaper. She describes the wallpaper as, “repellant, almost revolting; smouldering unclean yellow, strangely faded by the slow turning sunlight” (Gilman 641). This specific wallpaper makes the narrator feel a certain way. At first, she does not like the color or how it looks. But then not having anything else to do in the room, she starts examining the wallpaper.
The short story, The Yellow Wallpaper was written by a lady named Charlotte Perkins Gilman. “Charlotte was a young lady born in the 1860s right into poverty. Her upbringing was in poverty and didnt have it very easy at a young age. She was born in England and at the age of 22 she married a man by the name Charles Walter Stetson. They eventually had a child and almost immediately right after the birth of the child Charlotte fell into a deep depression.
The narrator leads a fairly boring life. The only thing she seems to do all day is sleep, write, eat, look out the window and study the yellow wallpaper in her room. Evidence of this in the story is “I lie here on this great immovable bed - it is nailed down, I believe - and follow that pattern about by the hour” (Gilman 650). Another piece of evidence would be, “The color is repellant, almost revolting ; a smouldering unclean yellow, strangely faded by the slow-turning sunlight. It is a dull yet lurid orange in some places, a sickly sulphur tint in others” (Gilman 649).
Martin states that the narrator’s confinement in the upstairs bedroom fortifies her mental illness developing into “a frightening hallucinatory world constructed around the pattern of the yellow paper on the wall.” This shift in her identity happens as the shift in her disposition towards the wallpaper changes. The wallpaper is a visible metaphor that eventually becomes her identity. In the beginning of her stay in the bedroom she says the wallpaper is “committing artistic sin” (Par34) and can push anyone to “suddenly commit suicide” (Par35) These comments show her despise towards the wallpaper and the separation she originally has from it.
Secondly, there is also a sense of confinement throughout the story. The Yellow Wallpaper fits the winter or the anti-romantic phase of Northrop Frye's monomyth diagram as it, "tells the story of imprisonment … and fear." (Bressler 152). The narrator is imprisoned in the room which has yellow wallpaper. Basically, the room where the narrator is staying in is like a prison.
It 's here where she discovers the yellow wallpaper that leads to her mental demise. What is the symbolic meaning of the yellow wallpaper and how do her interactions with the wallpaper represent the change in her feelings towards her husband and society. The yellow wallpaper symbolizes women 's suffrage and the struggles women went through, and her interactions with the wallpaper represent the problems woman had with their husbands and society. The main symbolism present in the story is how the yellow wallpaper represents woman suffrage and the problems they endured during the 19th century.
Mallard, and the girlfriend want to communicate how they feel and do not want to be constrained. Chopin was a feminist which encouraged her to write The Story of an Hour. Women do not want to feel possessed and want to be self-asserted (Chopin, 2004). Women are told to respect their marriages and must abide to society. Mrs. Mallard feels free of duties when she understands that her husband has deceased.
The short story “The Yellow Wallpaper” by Charlotte Perkins Gilman is a story full of imaginative symbolism and descriptive settings. However, without the narrator’s unique point of view and how it affects her perception of her environment, the story would fail to inform the reader of the narrator’s emotional plummet. The gothic function of the short story is to allow the reader to be with the narrator as she gradually loses her sanity and the point of view of the narrator is key in ensuring the reader has an understanding of the narrator’s emotional and mental state throughout the story. It’s clear from the beginning of the story that the narrator’s point of view greatly differs from that of her husband’s and other family in her life.