Books and Movies Reviews

Caged In

Caged In: Breaking Through the Walls of Oppression
Held back, caged, strangled, deprived, and hurt.These words begin to describe the feelings that are stressed in Gilman's "The Yellow Wallpaper".Women have made incredible progress since 1892 when Gilman's short story was written.Charlotte Perkins Gilman knew that women were desperate for gender equality.In "The Yellow Wallpaper," the narrator tries desperately to free an imaginary, imprisoned woman from that "repellant, almost revolting" wallpaper (Gilman 227).In "The Yellow Wallpaper," Gilman uses personification to give the wallpaper a life of it's own and to be an overbearing symbol of female oppression.
Furthermore, to understand Gilman's goals, we mustfirst try to understand her as a person.This story is not just something Gilman conjured up with a creative mind. This story is a semi-autobiographical account of what she went through as a bed-ridden wife and mother suffering from depression.At one point in the story Gilman referred to her own neurologist:"John says if I don't pick up faster he shall send me to Weir Mitchell in the fall"(Gilman 229).By the time Gilman was writing "The Yellow Wallpaper," she had already been cured of her depression and began focusing her efforts on feminism since she believed the oppression of women was the cause for these mental illnesses.
Moreover, Gilman's feminist beliefs had always bled through her writing, and "The Yellow Wallpaper" would hold true to this form.From the beginning of the story the narrator was introduced to the reader as a woman who was seemingly trapped in a room full of boredom and time due to her husband's treatment for her mental illness.She has been banned from any creative escape such as writing or painting.She consistently received child-like treatment from her husband John: &quot…

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