The Corruption Of Women In The Yellow Wallpaper By Charlotte Perkins Gilman

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Up until fairly recently, it was rarely questioned that a husband has a higher status than his wife and more control over her in their marriage. Close to the end of the nineteenth century, the unjust distribution of power between a husband and his wife was an accepted part of society. The Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Perkins Gilman illustrates the damaging effects of the subordination faced by women within the confines of marriage as shown through the gradual deterioration of the main characters mental state as a direct result of the refusal of her husband to acknowledge her opinions.
The treatment of the narrator by her husband John clearly shows that he holds no concern for her opinions and he views her as inferior to himself, in every
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John discounts her description of her mental illness as he disregards the narrator’s judgment. The narrator says, “You see he does not believe I am sick! And what can one do?” (Gilman) which illustrates that he doubts her claims of having a mental illness and she has no influence over John to change his mind. Later, when she again attempts to convey to John that her illness is mental, not physical, as he believes, he interrupts her by saying, “‘I beg of you, for my sake and for our child’s sake, as well as for your own, that you will never for one instant let that idea enter your mind!’” (Gilman). The narrator’s husband automatically dismisses her concerns without fully listening to her and he continues on to forbid her from even thinking something with which he disagrees, regardless of the truth of her statement. John’s unwillingness to take anything the narrator says seriously leaves her unable to express the severity of her mental illness and causes her mental state to grow continuously …show more content…
The narrator states that writing, “is such a relief” (Gilman), as it acts as outlet for her to positively express her emotions through. However, she is “absolutely forbidden to ‘work’ until [she] is well again” (Gilman) by her husband. She says, “I believe that congenial work, with excitement and change, would do me good” (Gilman) but she does not have enough control over her own actions to deny her husbands orders. If the narrator was not as defenseless to her husbands will she would have been able to prevent the drastic deterioration of her mental state by using her writing as an emotional

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