Find a quotation from the story to illustrate the author's style of writing and  explain the significance of this passage.  "The Yellow Wallpaper" by Charlotte Perkins Gilman

1 Answer | Add Yours

mwestwood's profile pic

mwestwood | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted on

Charlotte Perkins Gilman's "The Yellow Wallpaper" is a story fraught with the inner terror of the narrator.  As such many of the passages describe the ruin of those things around her, as well as the omnious feelings of someone's physical presence.  This presence manifests itself in the mind of the despairing narrator as someone caught in the hideous yellow wallpaper of the room to which she has been sequestered. Lying in this room without any other stimulus, Gilman'snarrator can only think,

I wish I could get well. But I must not think about that.  This paper looks to me as if it knew what a vicious influence it had!

There is a recurrent spot where the pattern lolls like a broken neck and two bulbous eyes stare at you upside down.

I get positively angry with the impertinence of it and the everlastingness.  Up and down and sideways they crawl, and those absurd, unblinking eyes are everywhere.  There is one place where two breadths didn't match, and the eyes go all up and down the line, one a little higher than the other.

I never saw so much expression in an inanimate thing before, and we all know how much expression they have!  I used to lie awake as a child and get more entertainment and terror out of blank walls and plain furntiture that most children could find in a toy-store.

This passage, certainly, adds emotional impact to the narrative as given an intimate account of the protagonist's growing feelings of  confusion and obsessiveness with lack of symmetry in the pattern of the yellow wallpaper.

 

We’ve answered 318,928 questions. We can answer yours, too.

Ask a question