Compare & Contrast Mrs. Mallard, "The Story of an Hour" to Jane, "The Yellow Wallpaper"

1082 Words Jan 29th, 2007 5 Pages
Diverse authors use diverse strategies to catch a reader's attention. Both Kate Chopin and Charlotte Perkins Gilman were women ahead of their time; they wrote stories that were socially unacceptable but are now considered some of the greatest. In Kate Chopin's "The Story of an Hour," the protagonist, Mrs. Mallard, dies of a heart attack after hearing of her husband's death. Charlotte Perkins Gilman wrote "The Yellow Wallpaper" with a blasphemous plot at the time: a woman, Jane, bedridden because of depression, begins to see a woman underneath the wallpaper of her rented mansion. By the end of the story, Jane believes that she is the woman under the wallpaper. In both stories, the diseased and doubted women enclose serious mental and …show more content…
Mallard show obvious signs of psychological and emotional issues. When Jane first moves into her bedroom at the top of the mansion, she despises the yellow wallpaper. She constantly complains to John about it, and he decides that she must overcome her feelings of the wallpaper to get better. As the story advances, Jane disputes her liking of the wallpaper; one day the wallpaper is "vicious" (Perkins Gilman 427) and another Jane is defensive about John "looking at the paper!" (431), though most sane people wouldn't become so emotional over an inanimate object. The reader easily discerns Jane's agitated narration when she jumps from subject to subject. It even becomes hard for her to "think straight" (429) because she is too psychologically detached from reality. Jane habitually sees a lady underneath the wallpaper that is trying to get out. She thinks this same lady sneaks around and spies on the residents of the mansion. Jane drifts so far away from reality that she comes to believe that she is the woman under the wallpaper and has finally ripped her way out.
Mrs. Mallard's internal concerns are mainly emotional, but she displays mental challenges, too. The narrator boldly states that Mrs. Mallard "had loved him [her husband] – sometimes" (Chopin 524). This information is greater supported by Mrs. Mallard's notion that just the day before she thought that "life might be long" (524). Mrs. Mallard feels

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