The Yellow Wallpaper…Huh?

There is one line in this short story, which is used to describe the wallpaper, that describes how I feel about this reading. “You think you mastered it, but just as you get well underway in following, it tums a back somersault and there you are. It slaps you in the face, knocks you down, and tramples upon you, it is like a bad dream” (pg.5) By this i mean that this read was really confusing, and just when you think you have an idea of what might be going on, something different happens and you loose the grasp of that idea. I had to read it multiple times, on my last try I decided to break down the reading as we do in class and try to grasp elements of fiction as I went along.

I understood that there is a women who according to her husband, and any other physician, might be suffering from some type of nervous condition. I believe that the husband thinks that the nervous condition is coming from writing and allowing her imagination to run wild. He says that ” my imaginative power and habit of story-making, a nervous weakness like mine is sure to lead to all manner of excited fancies,” So he brings her to this summer house, while they do renovations in their own house, so that she can “relax and enjoy the air” as that seems to be his cure. From the beginning you see that the narrator is place in a setting created to strip her down of her true self. The windows are “barred”, she has a beautiful view of the outside, yet has to endure the “hideous” wall paper as if trapped, she has a husband who is telling her what to do even though she has in-sign on what truthfully might make her better. She says “Personally, I believe that congenial work, with excitement and change, would do me good. But what is one to do?” We already see the relationship between the husband and wife. The last questions shows how she feels helpless.

To me the concept of the wallpaper to me is a way of the character describing herself. She begins to describe the wallpaper as “dull enough to confuse the eye in following, pronounced enough to constantly irritate and provoke study, and when follow the lame uncertain curves for little distance then suddenly commit suicide — plunge off at outrageous angles destroy themselves in unheard contradictions.” This here is probably how she views her condition and how following the wrong treatment might lead to self destruction. The last line probably how she feels about all the thoughts in her mind contradicting themselves with what people tell her. She eventually starts to see a women behind the wallpaper and at times it looks like the women is trapped by the wallpaper. Even though now there is literally a women, I feel like she is still the wallpaper. To me the significance of her ripping the wallpaper at the end so the women can come out, is her ripping away her own barrier. The barrier being the believe that she needs to trap her imagination and stay away from writing and of listen to her husband’s every command.  She rips the (wallpaper, the barrier) so that her true inner self can emerge.

At one point she says “lay there hours trying to decide where that front pattern and the back pattern really did move together or separably.” My above statement proves that maybe by the the front patter she means the image she has to maintain( the barrier keeping her true self inside) and the inner patter which eventually becomes a person, in her true self (the women) she is hiding inside.

It was interesting trying to decipher a deeper meaning, even though the text it’s self was of a women over coming her mental problem. The ending of her crawling, I have no idea what that’s about, just picturing it I imagine one really crazy person.

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