Feminist Symbolism In The Yellow Wallpaper By Charlotte Gilman

1371 Words 6 Pages
The Yellow wallpaper, by Charlotte Gilman, has long been considered one of the most psychological and symbolic texts ever written. In the story, Gilman uses the main character Jane to represent herself in her own life. The story of The Yellow Wallpaper is symbolic for the treatment of women in the late 1800’s. The way Jane 's character is treated in her marriage reflects the way Gilman felt she was treated by her husband. It 's a piece, that is written by a feminist, meant to show readers what oppression of women was like at the time. The story persuades its readers, through its gothic setting, plot, and characters, to be directed towards the feminist aspects of the piece. The story uses these tools to symbolize and show its readers how disempowered and demeaned women were treated by society at the time.

In the story, Gilman writes of a lady, named Jane, who is suffering from postpartum depression. Postpartum depression is a type of depression most common in women who have very recently given birth. The mood disorder is considered to be very severe and long-lasting; and is
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The isolated house along with the cell-like room Jane is confined to, all represent the prison of mind society places on women at the time. The bars placed on the window represent the entrapment of ideas. The room jane resides in was once used as a nursery. Gilman’s reason for this idea, is to symbolize the role women played in society. Jane is treated as a child. It is seen by society, that her being a women means that she cannot make decisions on her own; It was believed she must be led by a man. When her writing is halted by the male presence, it represents society attempting to limit her ability to think on her own and have her own opinions. Her creation of a gothic setting represent her own thoughts on oppression. She believes the way women are treated should be seen as

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