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Yellow Wallpaper

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The Yellow Wallpaper

In Charlotte Perkins Gilman's, "The Yellow Wallpaper," the main character, Jane encounters a mental illness that would take control of her entire life. The progression of Jane's mental illness is demonstrated through the environment and how her surroundings depict her mental state. The house Jane lives in is a physical representation of her mental state. As the story progresses Jane has completely become isolated from her family and the rest of society. Jane is a prisoner in her own home.

During the 1920s, most of the houses people lived in were gigantic, beautiful and large. The house Jane lived in was a colonial mansion that had the characteristics of a haunted house. The house was in fact so huge that it gave the impression of living inside a mental hospital. When the family moved the house John, Jane's husband, placed her in a room in the attic. This room was a ruminant of a nursery for a little boy. By John putting Jane inside that room it showed how he really thought of her, as a little child. John saw Jane as a little girl and treated her as such by, calling her children's name like: "blessed little goose", and "little girl". Immediately after Jane went into the nursery room, she noticed how dreadful it was. The windows had bars which made it impossible for her to escape. Not only were there bars on the windows but the floors had splinters

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throughout. According to Jane, "the floors were scratched and gouged and splintered, the plaster itself is dug out here and there." Indeed the room had a lot wrong with. Along with that, the only piece of furniture in the room was a bed that was nailed to the ground so it could not be moved. The room was representative of a room in the human asylum. Along with the horrible physical conditions came the smell. After a rainy period there was a smell that entered the house and the odor filled every room. The smell seemed to follow Jane wherever she went. Jane found herself intrigued by the smell. The smell was more like another reflection of Jane's illness. Also, like being inside a hospital and indulging the smell of sick people. Every physical characteristic of the house and the room was giving evident to how sick Jane became.

Although the room had many flaws the actual wallpaper inside was what disturbed her above everything else. Through actual analysis of the wallpaper a parallel could be drawn to Jane's life. Every aspect of the wallpaper bothered Jane. The actual color of the wallpaper drove her crazy. Jane said that "the color is repellent, almost revolting; a smoldering unclean yellow, strangely faded by the slow-turning sunlight." The color yellow usually represents anxiety and maybe that was what made her disapprove. Along with the color, the pattern on the wallpaper was very confusing. None of the lines had connections between them. Just like in Jane's life the lines had no order. She found herself spending most of her time trying to place a connection between the lines, hoping that by placing a connection with the lines, she could put her life back together.

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Meanwhile, as Jane analyzed the wallpaper more she began to see women inside the paper. Jane began only visionalizing one woman. The woman seemed to be

trying to free herself from the paper. As the story progressed, Jane began seeing more and more women inside the wallpaper. This particular vision demonstrates all the visions and thoughts running through her mind. As time passes, Jane becomes more comfortable with herself and what she thinks. This allows her to free herself and for her to think exactly what is in her head without worrying about the consequences. Along with noticing the women inside the paper, she realized that the lines were going in strange



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