The Yellow Wallpaper Mental Illness

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"The Yellow Wallpaper" is a short story written by Charlotte Perkins Gilman in 1892. It is a powerful and haunting story that depicts the descent of the narrator into madness. The story's narrator is a woman who is confined to a bedroom by her husband, John, who is a physician. The narrator is suffering from what is described as "nervous depression," and John believes that rest and isolation are the best treatments for her. However, as the narrator spends more time in the room, she begins to obsess over the yellow wallpaper, which becomes a symbol of her mental state and the oppression she feels. The narrator of "The Yellow Wallpaper" is a complex and unreliable character. Throughout the story, she struggles with her own mental illness and …show more content…

However, the reader quickly realizes that the narrator is not a reliable source of information. She is clearly suffering from some form of mental illness, and her perceptions of the world around her are distorted by this illness. This is evident in her obsession with the yellow wallpaper. At first, she is simply curious about it, but as the story progresses, her obsession with the wallpaper becomes more and more intense. The wallpaper becomes a symbol of the narrator's own mental state. She describes it as "dull enough to confuse the eye in following, pronounced enough to constantly irritate and provoke study, and when you follow the lame uncertain curves for a little distance they suddenly commit suicide--plunge off at outrageous angles, destroy themselves in unheard of contradictions." This description mirrors the narrator's own mental state, which is confused and erratic. As the story progresses, the narrator's mental state continues to deteriorate. She becomes convinced that there is a woman trapped behind the wallpaper, and she becomes obsessed with freeing her. This obsession is a manifestation of the narrator's own desire to break free from the constraints that society has placed upon her. She feels trapped in her role as a wife and mother, and she longs for the freedom to express herself and to be taken

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