The Yellow Wallpaper | Study Guide

Charlotte Perkins Gilman

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The Yellow Wallpaper | Section 8 | Summary



The narrator says she feels better than ever, though she sleeps most of the day and stays up all night to watch "developments" in the nursery wallpaper. She has begun to notice that the wallpaper gives off a smell that "creeps all over the house," following her around. She spends a good amount of time puzzling over the smell, trying to figure out what it reminds her of. She decides it is a "yellow" smell. She notices a long streak on the wallpaper that goes all the way around the room. She wonders "how it was done and who did it, and what they did it for."


Developments in this section are related to the fact that the narrator is unaware of some of her own actions. She notices a strange mark that goes around the room, except where the bed is (remember that the bed is nailed down), as if it had been rubbed over and over.

Readers can begin to see the puzzle pieces snapping into place: Her clothes have yellow from the wallpaper on them. There is a long smear where it looks like someone has rubbed along the wall over and over, around and around. She can always smell the wallpaper, even in her hair.

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