The Yellow Wallpaper and the Chrysanthemums - Symbols of Entrapment

780 Words Oct 20th, 1999 4 Pages
Talents and dreams, hopes and desires, shunned by the husbands and times of the women in ìThe Crysanthemumsî and ìThe Yellow Wallpaper.î The wife, Elisa, in ìThe Crysanthemumsî, reflects an internal struggle with herself to find her place in a world of definite gender roles. ìThe Yellow Wallpaperî traces the treatment of a woman who descends from depression to madness in the male-imposed psychiatric confinement of her room. The mirror-like situations that hinder the protagonists in both stories call the women to conduct themselves in demeanors drastically different from one another.
<br>Elisa Allen of ìThe Crysanthemumsî and the narrator of ìThe Yellow Wallpaperî both have husbands who fancy the idea of knowing what their wives
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Within the confinements of her ìprisonî, this once busy and bothersome pattern of the yellow wallpaper begins to straighten out. It becomes almost bar-like, and with the walls and the windows this ìsoothingî room turns into a reformatory from which she must abscond. Elisa must also break free, decomp from the boundary, the fence, that is enclosing her in the stationary, non-progressive life. She sees hope, a way to expand, through her joy, her love, her talent crysanthemums. By sharing her love with others, she is actually leaving, going somewhere, helping someone, on the other side of the fence. Outside the windows, through the bars, the narrator finds a path, a channel of hope that she knows is her alliance with the world. She envies those able to follow it, find the end and depart onto the road of life. These women must elect whether they will linger on in misery or opt for the chance at bliss.
<br>When inner happiness is not obtained, life comes to a halt, and presents options. The women in these stories opted to take different paths in the hopes of finding inner joy. The narrator wants out, she will stand for nothing less. By ripping down the wallpaper and abolishing the bars that once surrounded her, she feels autonomous. No one or nothing will obstruct the path of freedom, of independence, except for the stipulations of her own mind. In this quest she loses all that keeps her sane, she has transposed into a woman gone mad. Elisa Allen tries

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