The Role Of Entrapment In Emily Bronte's Wuthering Heights

1187 Words5 Pages
As a gothic novel, Wuthering Heights encompasses many features that support the idea of entrapment as a motif for the book, including a framed narrative, and the use of locks and closed doors. Emily Bronte’s application of a framed narrative in Wuthering Heights emphasizes the emotional and physical smothering that Catherine experiences. The usage of a story within a story, as told by multiple characters, creates confusion and chaos both internally and between characters. The internal conflicts of Catherine emphasize the power of her emotions and create a feeling of suffocation and claustrophobia. According to Catherine, her chamber, settled deep into the labyrinth of Thrushcross Grange, is a “shattered prison” (116). Not only is she living…show more content…
Charlotte Gilman is the not directly the narrator of The Yellow Wallpaper, however it is a an embellished personal account of her battle with the rest cure. The narrator’s relationship with her physician husband was heavily strained from her mental illness, not to mention the horrifying encounter with the rest cure. Charlotte Gilman wrote about her similar experience in her essay ‘Why I Wrote The Yellow Wallpaper’, “For many years I suffered from a severe and continuous nervous breakdown tending to melancholia--and beyond. During about the third year of this trouble I went, in devout faith and some faint stir of hope, to a noted specialist in nervous diseases, the best known in the country. This wise man put me to bed and applied the rest cure” (Gilman). The difference between Charlotte and the narrator is that Charlotte’s husband was not a physician and she made the decision to seek out help (Bloom). Nonetheless, both of these women’s marriages were unhappy due to their feelings of suffocation. Catherine Earnshaw also had an equally miserable marriage, however, she trapped herself in a marriage to which she wanted no part of. Though Catherine’s husband was not as controlling as the narrator’s husband was, all three women felt constrained by their relationships, as well…show more content…
Intelligence of the human body was limited in the victorian era, however, doctors are still responsible for their prescriptions. Dr. Silas W. Mitchell centered much of his life treating nervous diseases utilizing the rest cure. He believed that “What is true of the part is true of the whole” (Mitchell 86), which emphasizes the negligent view of mental health during the victorian era. Essentially, he believed that a broken bone is equivalent to mental illness, however, it has since been proven that resting the mind can cause more harm than good. Numerous psychologists have researched the rest cure and Matthew Edmund found that “All kinds of physical activity can combat the many medical disasters attendant on depression… Social support is one of the most effective actions people can do for those who are depressed”. This information contradicts Mitchell’s usage of the rest cure in his mentally unstable patients. Charlotte initiated her treatment of “Silas Weir Mitchell’s regimen of enforced bed rest, isolation, force-feeding, and massage” (Stilles), which caused her to “[come] so near the borderline of utter mental ruin” from the monotony of her days (Why I Wrote The Yellow

More about The Role Of Entrapment In Emily Bronte's Wuthering Heights

Open Document