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The Yellow Wall-Paper and Other Stories
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The Yellow Wall-Paper and Other Stories

3.98 of 5 stars 3.98  ·  rating details  ·  46,445 ratings  ·  1,020 reviews
Charlotte Perkins Gilman was America's leading feminist intellectual of the early twentieth century. 'The Yellow Wall-Paper' and Other Stories makes available the fullest selection of her short fiction ever printed. In addition to her pioneering masterpiece, 'The Yellow Wall-Paper' (1890), which draws on her own experience of depression and insanity, this edition features ...more
Paperback, 384 pages
Published November 19th 1998 by Oxford University Press, USA (first published 1892)
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(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Shovelmonkey1
Aug 01, 2011 Shovelmonkey1 rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: people who want a brief taste of madness
Recommended to Shovelmonkey1 by: 1001 books list and danielle23
Wheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee! Yup, that was me enjoying the spiralling descent into madness.

Ok all jokes aside, mental health is a serious issue and something which is more fragile than we realise - do not take it for granted people. We are lucky enough to live in a time when people recognise and understand depression and constructive, helpful treatments can be offered. Unfortunately for Charlotte Perkins Gilman, she inhabited the tail end of the Victoria
...more
Keely
Roland Barthes talked about 'writerly' and 'readerly' books. I've struggled for a long time, myself, in trying to come up for terms to talk about the differences between deliberate works and those which are too bumbling, too one-sided, or too ill-informed to make the reader think.

While The Yellow Wallpaper brings up interesting points, it does not really deal with them. The text has become part of the canon not for the ability of the author, which is on the more stimulating end of middling, but
...more
Paquita Maria Sanchez
*PREFACE TO REVIEW: I have a soft spot for literature about descents into madness. I blame it on my mother taking me to see Lost Highway in the theater at a young and tender age. I also blame this film, to a larger extent, on my fashion sense from then to now. Which is to say, I blame my mom. Who is, in fact, more sane than most.*

Ah, suicide authors! You do know madness so!!! There have been a few times where I have personally thought that I was going off my rocker, but considering that I've yet
...more
David
Jul 10, 2014 David rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: women trapped with Lovecraftian wallpaper, little boys dreaming of butter
Charlotte Perkins Gilman was famous as a 19th century feminist author, and apparently she's taught in a lot of feminist/women's studies courses. I was vaguely interested in her most famous story, The Yellow Wallpaper, so when this collection was an Audible deal of the day, I went ahead and downloaded it.

I'm glad I did. I'll get to the title story in a minute, but I found the other short stories - which were all about a woman being presented with a choice (usually in the form of a man) very reada
...more
Gloria Mundi
This is a short story about a woman's descent into madness and I have just the t-shirt slogan for the protagonist:

EXCUSE ME. I HAVE TO GO AND MAKE A SCENE.

Because that's what I wanted her to do throughout, but we cannot really expect that from a genteel 19th century lady and that is when the story was written. So does that mean that it is now outdated and irrelevant to us emancipated 21st century women?

Personally, I have gone through a period in my life when I took some pretty heavy drugs, staye
...more
Zaki
A very sad tale about a woman who stares at her yellow wallpaper and gets so irritated and frustrated, that after a while she rips it off the wall.
Fiona
Inspired. Chilling. Alarmingly realistic. Witty. Devastating. Dark. Empowering. Radical. Outstanding. Classic.

Although I read and reviewed the novella Herland during the autumn of last year it was indeed the title story in this collection which led me to the literary door of Charlotte Perkins Gilman.

I am not really very sure whether I would have prefered to have read these works first. I was beginning to feel a little ashamed at just how long The Yellow Wallpaper had been decorating my bookcase
...more
Lori
Like anyone who's ever taken a Womens' Studies course, I read The Yellow Wallpaper for a class. I felt completely insane during the time I was reading it.

Then I came across "Why I Wrote the Yellow Wallpaper" by Charlotte Perkins Gillman, and she says this "But the best result is this. Many years later I was told that the great specialist had admitted to friends of his that he had altered his treatment of neurasthenia since reading The Yellow Wallpaper. It was not intended to drive people crazy,
...more
Aric Cushing
MIDWEST REVIEW: "Editor Aric Cushing's introductory essay 'Is 'The Yellow Wallpaper' a Gothic Story?' nails the subject; especially since the original feminist take on Gilman's works often skated over the gothic feel of her works to focus on underlying feminist interpretations alone. While the work spearheaded a women's movement, its other literary elements were largely overlooked and are corrected here, with a penetrating essay analyzing both its social impact and its literary, gothic mechanism ...more
Cheryl
A representative of an idea, principle or meaning which can be presented in literary form...an allegory.

THE YELLOW WALLPAPER, published in 1892, by Charlotte Perkins Gilman is the simple story of one women's descent into madness OR...
An indictment of rationality over creativity OR...
The horrendous inequality of marriage OR...
How doctors viewed women's emotional states OR...
The societal pressures placed on women OR...
Living an incomplete life when submission is the accepted mindset OR...
A prequel
...more
Bailey
Aug 20, 2007 Bailey added it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone who thinks wearing a corset is a good idea.
I first read the Yellow Wallpaper as a moderately young person, when I was more concerned with being a young quasi-socialite than actually dissecting literature to learn something about how to best live my life as an intelligent person. I thought of school as the time between weekends, and the class-to-class routine as an overly respite for afternoon fun. I found, upon re-reading, that this story can teach me about how we can choose our own perception. Somewhere between moving into the former ch ...more
Safae
Charlotte Perkins Gilman. I've learned form wiki that charlotte committed suicide after finding out she had cancer , and that she had a lot of periods of depression especially after giving birth just like in this book , so the resemblance is there because this story is a semi autobiography of the author
this story is basically happening in one specific room , the narrator had initially insisted on taking the room downstairs but her husband was persistent on taking the one upstairs ,which made he
...more
Nikki Nielsen
Apr 15, 2008 Nikki Nielsen rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone looking to be educated on the misconceptions of postpartum depression
Recommended to Nikki by: My client left it for me to read while I was house/dog sitting f
This is a story written in the 1800's by a woman thought to have a 'nervous condition', surely all in her head. She desperately longs to write but her husband and doctor forbid it. This story is compiled of the journal entries she sneaks while they aren't watching.

She is told to put being sick right out of her head. She is in a room with dreadful yellow wallpaper that she studies night and day, until she sees things that aren't really there. She begs her husband to take her away and is told to
...more
Madeline
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Bruce
The first person narrator of this story describes the “vacation” house as haunted, queer, and seems delighted to find it so. Heightening the intensity of the narrative, she tells the story in the present tense. Her husband John is a rationalist, a physician, who does not believe his wife is sick but has a nervous condition. The narrator seems resigned to his disbelief: “But what can one do?” The narrator presents herself as a child, is treated like one and views herself as one. She seems to be i ...more
Amy Neftzger
This is a short but well written literary piece in which a woman goes insane. The woman has been prescribed a cure of doing nothing (complete rest). What I really like about this story is that you can't really tell if the woman was ill to begin with or if the "cure" actually caused the insanity. There are also a number of themes woven into this story, such as that of creativity vs rationality (she's a writer and her husband is a physician) as well as the theme of the domestic role as a prison (d ...more
justme
A definite classic for any noir fiction fan. This short story follows a woman's descent into madness and also sheds some light on the relationship and treatment of women and illness during that century.

The story is written in first person, in what reads like a personal diary of sorts, by a woman who has been locked up in an old nursery on the top floor of her home by the advice of her doctor husband, who insists that she isn't sick but needs rest and is just being "silly." She starts to become o
...more
Val
This is one of my favorite (long) short stories to teach in high school. Though my Monday book reviews normally focus on full-length books, this short story is a great work to study as a horror writer. Gilman wrote the story as a result of her own mental breakdown. It was written in the late 1800′s when things like depression and postpartum depression were not understood. A popular cure was known as “the rest cure.” Women were given a strict schedule, mostly consisting of rest away from family a ...more
LeeAnne
The Yellow Wallpaper
by Charlotte Perkins Gilman


This is my favorite short story. It is a creepy and disturbing account of one woman's descent into terrifying madness. The descriptions are very graphic and vivid; especially the one's of the wallpaper, which are clues to the reader about what is really going on in the story. The story is presented as a collection of journal entries written by a woman who is suffering from what we now know is postpartum depression.



The woman's husband is a physici
...more
Steven
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Lou
This is a short but unique and different tale written in a very good narrative. It's one of those reads that every reader will go away and try to research and reread for the understanding of it and will still differ on it I think. When reading the story i was finding myself reflecting on the story The Metamorphosis. A creepy short story.
Cheryl apple
This is a story of a woman going mad, it's pretty interesting how she describes her thoughts, mainly about the "yellow wallpaper" that seems to come alive to her! Really a good, quick, read.
Becky
It is such a great shame that this book is largely focused on in middle school, and not at higher levels. It is truly such a complex and horrifying short story, and I just don’t think that nuances could be fully appreciated by a thirteen year old. It is simply one of the best works of feminist literature out there. It is hard to believe that medicine was truly practiced in such a barbaric manner not that long ago. We’ve done sensory deprivation studies on soldiers, and that is akin to what was ...more
Emily  O
Aug 05, 2011 Emily O rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Emily by: ENG 252 (American Lit Post-1800s)
This story is amazing in every sense of the word. Gilman did a great job with characterization. The narrator has a very distinct voice and feels very real from the beginning. The epistolary format of the story actually helps both with the characterization and with the pacing of the story. Since the narrator's voice is the only voice we get, we get to know her very well. But, the one-sided story also leaves many questions, especially because our narrator is nowhere near reliable. Poe himself coul ...more
Tweedledum
I only discovered this book because "the yellow wallpaper" is listed in 1001 Books: You Must Read Before You Die. The yellow wallpaper is one of the most scary stories I have ever read and the act that is was written out of CHARLOTTE PERKINS GILLMAN s experience only made it more scary. The rest of the stories are a wonderful mixture and I loved them all.
Alex
Loved these stories. So grateful to my goodread buddies for introducing me to this amazing feminist writer. She uses irony and humor as well as plain ol' honesty to tell stories of sisterhood and motherhood and marriage that are sadly still common themes and problems today. Perhaps we hide our sexism better one hundred years later but my ability to relate both delighted and unnerved me. Don't just read her most famous short story - the yellow wallpaper - read them all!
Chris
We end the year with short-stories and poetry, and I always teach this story. It's always goes over pretty well, but each year there are always a few girls who really love it; its wonderful to watch how excited they get over the themes and hear them start arguments in class based on their first, tentative ideas of femanist-crit. Besides, the ending of this story is just so perfect.
John Wiswell
This is a difficult collection to review because “The Yellow Wall-Paper and Other Stories” seems to be the title of at least four different Gilman collections, some with no more in common than the one title story. Commenting on the contents of the volume becomes perilous because not only may your results vary, but so may your ingredients.

I can see why every editor agreed to include “The Yellow Wall-Paper” as the title story. It is an incredible tone piece, told by a narrator who suffered difficu
...more
Rebecca
Tis about a woman eluding literal and psychological confinement via madness. Reaffirmed my distrust of wallpaper. ;)
Jenny Lloyd
The Yellow Wallpaper is a short story which vividly portrays a woman's descent into madness. The unhappy character was driven mad by those who claimed to be trying to help her to be 'well', most especially her husband. Being 'well' meant being 'happy' with her mundane, miserable and restricted life. She begins to see a woman trapped inside the yellow wallpaper of the room in which she is confined. The woman trapped behind the wallpaper being an mental extension of her own trapped self.
Like 'The
...more
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Charlotte Perkins Gilman was a prominent American sociologist, novelist, writer of short stories, poetry, and non fiction, and a lecturer for social reform. She was a utopian feminist during a time when her accomplishments were exceptional for women, and she served as a role model for future generations of feminists because of her unorthodox concepts and lifestyle. Her best remembered work today i ...more
More about Charlotte Perkins Gilman...
The Yellow Wallpaper Herland The Yellow Wallpaper and Other Writings (Bantam Classics) Herland, The Yellow Wall-Paper, and Selected Writings Herland and Selected Stories

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“It is the same woman, I know, for she is always creeping, and most women do not creep by daylight.” 700 likes
“I'm sure I never used to be so sensitive. I think it is due to this nervous condition.” 26 likes
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