Narrator’s Insanity in The Yellow Wallpaper

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After reading and analyzing the story “The Yellow Wallpaper” I believe it is a mirror representation of the narrator’s oncoming insanity. She is describing herself in the wallpaper.  The reasoning behind her insanity could be one of many things, however, I believe it was brought on by her controlling husband.

There are many examples of this thought the story, the most prominent being the features of the room. Descriptions such as, “He said that after the wallpaper was changed it would be the heavy bedstead, and then the barred windows, and then that gate at the head of the stairs, and so on.” Now I do not believe this layout was meant for her specifically, but more of a foreshadowing component that would give us insight on what was to come. The barred windows, the gate on the stairs, so on and so fourth, all limited mobility and freedom, the two main things her husband was so restrictive of.

The next indication we have is how in each entry, she focuses more and more on the wall paper and does not want anyone knowing the “secret.” The husband has all good intentions, throughout the story he is seen comforting and showing his love to her, but he is also controlling in the sense that he wants what is best for her. She is obviously sick, mentally and/or physically, and begins to perceive this control as a negative when in reality, he is just helping her. It really begins in entry #5, “So of course I said no more on that score, and we went to sleep before long. He thought I was asleep first, but I wasn’t,—I lay there for hours trying to decide whether that front pattern and the back pattern really did move together or separately.” during their talk she proposes the idea that she may not be mentally well, John seems to get upset and from this point on, she acts a bit spiteful in her writing.

The last bit of evidence and also the most compelling, comes at the very end. She has obviously taken on the character “in” the wallpaper and has gone absolutely bonkers. As seen in this scene, “I kept on creeping just the same, but I looked at him over my shoulder. “I’ve got out at last,” said I, “in spite of you and Jane! And I’ve pulled off most of the paper, so you can’t put me back!” Now why should that man have fainted? But he did, and right across my path by the wall, so that I had to creep over him every time!” Even to the point that when she is completely free to “escape,” she chooses to stay creeping along her path.

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Narrator’s Insanity in The Yellow Wallpaper. (2021, Jan 27). Retrieved from https://samploon.com/narrators-insanity-in-the-yellow-wallpaper/

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