The Role Of Women In The Yellow Wall-Paper

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The role of the women in the nineteenth century has been enormously influenced by what they were allowed to do and what not due to societies view of the gender. Since the beginning of time, the role of the woman has changed greatly from the “Puritan Goodwife” to the “Republican Mother” to what we have now the “New Woman”. The woman in the nineteenth century has been characterized as the “True Woman” because she was supposed to stay at home and care for the house and the children. She was also restricted to only one sphere in life. But these prototypes do not always occur in their pure form and that is what we can see in Perkins Gilman’s short story. The woman in the story is supposed to be the typical “True Woman”, yet because that clashes with her own view of the world and her personality, her mental issues become apparent. Therefore, I will argue that in Charlotte Perkins Gilman´s short story “The Yellow Wall-Paper”, the narrators` mental illness arise because of the expectancies from around her and is intensified because she cannot break out of the shell of a well-behaved and modest woman. In Perkins Gilman´s short story we notice that throughout the whole narrative our protagonist deals on the one hand with her mental illness but one the other hand is also burdened by the fact that she wants to care for her husband and her child, yet she is not able to do so due to her illness. It weighs heavy on her conscience and that plays a big factor of why she cannot get any
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