Although the woman is trapped behind the chaotic

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is trapped behind the chaotic yellow wallpaper, she is essentially in the same position as the narrator: imprisoned in the domestic sphere and unable to escape without being strangled bythe bars of social expectation.By the end of the narrative, the narrator’s insanity has reached such a heightened state that she can no longer differentiate herself from the figure that she has seen in the wallpaper. She is the woman in the wallpaper and no one, not even John, can imprison her in the wallpaper again. There is no doubt that the narrator will be physically imprisoned at some point in the future. After John regains consciousness and discovers his wife still creeping around the nursery, he will have no choice but to send her to Weir Mitchell or place her in a mental institution. Yet, the narrator’s mind will still remain “free,” mirroring the freedom enjoyed by the woman in the wallpaper. In other words, the woman in the wallpaper can be seen as a manifestation of her creative imagination that finally breaks through the rigid expectations of the domestic sphere. Unfortunately, the escape of her imagination means that she cannot ever regain any sort of rationality; by freeing the woman in the wallpaper, thenarrator ensures that her mind will be trapped in a prison of insanity.The “Rest Cure”Because of Gilman’s personal experience with the “rest cure,” it is not surprising that S. Weir Mitchell’s treatment plays a significant role in the context of the narrative. From the start of the story, the narrator is supposed to be suffering from neurasthenia, a disease that requires Weir Mitchell’s particular technique for nervousness. Yet, it is unclear if the narrator is actually ill, or if the “rest cure” treatment causes her to go insane. Gilman’s argument is that a treatment that requires complete inactivity is ultimately far more detrimental to a woman suffering from a minor anxiety disorder. Significantly, according to Gilman’s autobiography, she sent a copy of “The Yellow Wallpaper” to Weir Mitchell, and he subsequently changed his treatment for neurasthenia.Beyond the “rest cure,” Gilman also criticizes any sort of medical treatment in which the personal opinion of the patient is not considered. Although the narrator repeatedly asks John to change the treatment over the course of the story, he refuses to acknowledge her requests, believing that he had total authority over the situation. This is also a reflection of the society conditions of the time, but either way, John abuses his power as both a husband and physician and forces the narrator to remain in an oppressive situation from which her only escape is insanity.What’s Up With the Title?

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