Mental Health In The Yellow Wallpaper By Charles Stetson

750 Words 3 Pages
In the critically acclaimed short story, The Yellow Wallpaper(1982), Charles Stetson explores the theme of mental health throughout the story using the narrator’s character. He portrays the change of Jane’s mental health by employing the aspects of symbolism, perspective and traditional gender roles. Jane’s temperament in the beginning is very calm and she is happy to be married. Through the course of the story, during the rest cure treatment, her mental condition deteriorates as she becomes insane. Her increasing paranoia of her surroundings makes her start imagining figures, leading to a disastrous consequence.
Stetson utilizes symbolism to portray the poor mental condition of Jane. Through the progress of each of her diary entries, it is possible to notice Jane’s increasing madness and her weird relationship with the
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Her husband John is very rational-minded and is the more dominant in the couple. In many parts of the story, it is possible to note that he pictures his wife as an infant, calling her a ‘little girl’ and ignoring her childish complaints. John believes his wife is fragile and very self -indulgent. When she is forced to this cure, she cannot rebel and therefore submits voluntarily. His ability to misunderstand Jane are formed his domestic gender roles. Stetson describes the vulnerability of women when it comes to marriage. The conventional middle class marriage that the author has set is the distinction between the active working of men and domestic work of women. The story reveals that the classification of hysteria effected women by keeping them in a state of childish ignorance. His presumptions of his knowledge about the rest cure and even his own maturity allows him to patronize his wife, on the excuse of assisting her. By utlising gender roles, Stetson describes the discrimination in society between men and

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