Lyz's Reviews > The Yellow Wallpaper and Other Stories

The Yellow Wallpaper and Other Stories by Charlotte Perkins Gilman
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Dec 07, 11

bookshelves: my-ebooks
Read on December 07, 2011

I hear a lot of people saying this story is about feminism and the oppression of women and all that, and I can't disagree that it can certainly be said that it is an undertone in the writing--it is an undertone in the time that is was written. But, I really think this is more about displaying psychological issues, namely depression, than any sort of underlying social issue.

The correlation between the woman in the room being trapped but not realising it at first (under the guise of remodeling their house or "getting her some air" as her husband/doctor tells it), and the woman creeping behind the wallpaper and "shaking the bars" is undeniable. I find it immensely intriguing that even as she slips further into her madness, the reader can more easily see that SHE is the woman creeping behind the bars of the wallpaper, trying to get out. Trying to get out of her "nervous" and "hysterical" states, trying to get out of the room itself... But when she finally can get out of the room, she doesn't want to leave, having been fully consumed by madness. It is a delightfully written switch that the room seems disjointed when she first arrives, but then it is revealed to us as the readers that the room is simply that--it's the woman being kept in the room that is disjointed.

I cannot help but love the ongoing direct correlation between the woman slipping into madness and the wallpaper coming more alive in her mind, and while I wish there were perhaps more background information or insight, I thoroughly enjoy the way it is written and presented.
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