The Yellow Wallpaper Rest Cure Analysis

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In the short story “The Yellow Wallpaper” (1892), the author Charlotte Perkins Gilman uses her own personal experience of the “rest cure” to demonstrate the negative effects of the common practice. The “rest cure” is a treatment for nervous disorders that consists of time that is spent isolated or in complete rest without any activity. In the beginning of the story, the narrator seems sane although somewhat depressed, but as the story goes on she becomes increasingly unstable. The story begins with the narrator and her husband, John, renting a stately manor. John, who is also a physician, decides that she needs rest and will be confined to an attic room in the rented house, but to her it feels and looks more like a prison. The narrator spends …show more content…
The attic room was once going to be used as a nursery, but is now used as her “prison”. She begins keeping a journal in order to express her feelings, but she must hide it from her husband. This action is her first act of rebellion against what she perceives as his controlling ways. As the story progresses, her trust in her husband decreases to the point that she writes in her journal “The fact is I am getting a little afraid of John.” (274) By the end of the story, when her paranoia is at its peak, she no longer believes that he truly cares about her feelings. “He asked me all sorts of questions, too, and pretended to be very loving and kind. As if I couldn 't see through him!” (276) In her mind, she is outsmarting him because she can see through his deception. In the beginning of the story, the narrator’s husband has complete control over her and her actions. However, towards the end of the story she begins to question the things he does and by the end she “steps” all over him. Over the course of her stay in the bedroom, the narrator becomes increasingly obsessed with the yellow wallpaper to the point that it consumes her. In the beginning she is revolted by the wallpaper because of its disgusting color and the unique designs. After a few weeks of staring at the wallpaper, she begins to see the multiple personalities that it has. She writes in her

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