Essay on The Hidden Meaning

Submitted By nelsenn123
Words: 973
Pages: 4

Charlotte Perkins Gilman wrote The Yellow Wallpaper. It is the story about an unidentified woman, who is the narrator possibly is named Jane, and her husband John. This fictional story which has a plot, a setting, a cast of characters, and a point of view which is told from the narrator. However, it is the way in which the story is told and the unexpected conclusion of the story that have. The yellow wallpaper in the story symbolizes the narrators marriage with her husband John. In the beginning John and his wife move into a summer estate, which his wife is very uneasy about. Excluding that, it seems like the couple is on good terms except for the fact that John does not believe that his wife is sick. “You see he does not believe I am sick!” (Page 1). The narrator knows she is suffering from depression but nobody believes her, even her own brother can’t see she is sick. Being in the time period - possibly the early 1900’s – there was not medicine nor a way to treat depression because of the fact doctors knew little about depression. John acts as nothing is wrong and takes his wife for a tour around the house. Finally they get to the his wife’s room, not two person bedroom but just a single room with a bed. The narrator describes, the room in which she stays. She goes into explicit detail as she carefully describes the yellow wallpaper which consumes more and more of her attention. At this point the Johns wife can tell something is up she writes “And yet I CANNOT be with him, it makes me so nervous.” (Page 5) We know that the narrator is not happy in her marriage with John. Even though we know that the narrator is not happy in her marriage, it upset her even more that John does not know how much she is suffering. As the narrator is settling into the room she becomes more and more obsessed with the wallpaper. “Sometimes I think there are a great many women behind, and sometimes only one, and she crawls around fast, and her crawling shakes it all over (Page 12). There is an ostensibly formless pattern, which fascinates the narrator as she attempts to figure out how it is organized. After hours of starring at the wallpaper she eventually comes to the point where she sees a ghostly figure which can only be seen in certain light. The ghost is the ghost of her marriage showing that her marriage is dead and over. “Eventually, the sub-pattern comes into focus as a desperate woman, constantly crawling and stooping, looking for an escape from behind the main pattern, which has come to resemble the bars of a cage” (Sparknotes). The narrator desperately wants to escape her marriage but has not way to since she is trapped in the room which makes her feel like prison. The color yellow has represent marriage and happiness in history. The color has the biggest determining factor into what the wallpaper actually means. “It is a unpleasant, soiled, unclean yellow” (Sparknotes). This is why the yellow wallpaper represents marriage. The wallpaper starts out in not the worse condition, but worsens throughout the story. Without the description of the wallpaper in the story it would be hard to understand the hidden meaning behind the color and the bad condition of the wallpaper. The pattern off the women on the wallpaper which is yellow represents the narrator and how the narrator is breaking and falling apart in her marriage to John, since her marriage is clearly making her insane. Throughout the story the narrator’s situation does not get an better as she is still trapped in the room with the dreadful yellow wallpaper which she can’t escape because of her husband John. John actually thinks the isolation is helping his