By Charlotte Perkins Gilman

ISBN-10: 1443427012

ISBN-13: 9781443427012

Via a sequence of magazine entries, a girl files her strategies and emotions over the process a summer season, presently after giving delivery to her baby. limited to her bed room at the recommendation of her husband, a doctor, “The Yellow Wallpaper” chronicles the woman’s expanding instability, as she turns into captivated with the yellow wallpaper protecting the partitions of her room.

“The Yellow Wallpaper” is taken into account one of many earliest American feminist works of fiction and is exclusive for writer Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s deft dealing with of the fragile topic of latest attitudes approximately women’s our bodies, feelings, and psychological future health. the tale is taken into account to be semi-autobiographical, and relies on Gilman’s personal stories with postpartum melancholy and leisure cures.

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Extra info for The Yellow Wallpaper

Sample text

In “Ghostly Father, I Confess,” Meg Sargent begins by confidently mocking her analyst: his taste is vulgar, his intelligence scarcely matches hers. “She had enjoyed doing that malicious portrait,” she thinks. When he questions her about it, she says simply, “I’ve got a good eye for social types, and I’ve had a lot of practice” (253). But what she’s really doing, it turns out as the story proceeds, is resisting the reflux of her melodramatic past, the burden of a 24 Twenty-Four Ways of Looking at Mary McCarthy miserable childhood and an unhappy self that she had utterly suppressed until marriage to Wilson made her feel helpless and imprisoned.

For Mailer this adds up to her being “simply not a good enough woman to write a major novel, not yet” (138–39). The entire review is ugly, brutal, and insulting, but Mailer pays a backhanded tribute by his inability to call McCarthy a lady. About McCarthy he has to use the word “woman,” even though she is “not yet” a good enough one. A lady could never be a bitch—it takes a woman. The implicit and explicit imputations of “bitch” by Mailer and others, though not exactly a compliment to McCarthy, are surely an acknowledgment Our Leading Bitch Intellectual 33 of her singular authority, courage, and self-possession.

If he is not an intellectual, as she is, then he must somehow represent Ordinary Life, with which intellectuals are always in danger of losing touch. Leapfrogging from one fantasy to another, she sees in him what she misses in all the men she knows in New York, “the shrewd buyer’s eye, the swift brutal appraisal” (111). Of the men she had been with, she feels, In one way or another they were all of them lame ducks. The handsome ones, like her fiancé, were good-for-nothing, the reliable ones, like her husband, were peculiar-looking, the well-to-do ones were short and wore lifts in their shoes or fat with glasses, the clever ones were alcoholic or slightly homosexual, the serious ones were foreigners or else wore beards or black shirts or were desperately poor and had no table manners.

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The Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Perkins Gilman


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