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Kagama -The Literaturevixen

I love reading everything from fantasy to historical romances. On a constant quest for more books to read.





The Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Perkins Gilman

The Yellow Wallpaper - Charlotte Perkins Gilman, Elaine Hedges

First published in 1892, The Yellow Wall-Paper is written as the secret journal of a woman who, failing to relish the joys of marriage and motherhood, is sentenced to a country rest cure. Though she longs to write, her husband and doctor forbid it, prescribing instead complete passivity.

In the involuntary confinement of her bedroom, the hero creates a reality of her own beyond the hypnotic pattern of the faded yellow wallpaper – a pattern that has come to symbolize her own imprisonment. Narrated with superb psychological and dramatic precision, The Yellow Wall-Paper stands out not only for the imaginative authenticity with which it depicts one woman’s descent into insanity, but also for the power of its testimony to the importance of freedom and self-empowerment for women.


An unnamed woman goes with her husband and family to a mansion in the country. The reason for the move is so she can recover from an unamed ailment of the nerves she got after having given birth to her first child.


So she is kept away from the rest of the family in an old room with yellow wallpaper. The windows are barred. She is to be kept isolated from everything that might upset her nerves.


But with nothing else to occupy her time and only minimal human contact she starts to think the yellow wallpaper is changing and that she can see figures moving about in there. She becomes convinced she must free them.


Her husband  slowly but surely becomes her enemy as not only has he locked her up he also refuses to let her write.But she manages to hide her diary from her husband and starts describing her  time in the room. And the story we are reading is her diary



"The Yellow Wallpaper" may be one of the creepiest short stories I have ever read.Very smart people might go on and on about how its a symbolic of the woman in the story being oppressed by the patriarcharal victorian society. And I guess it is all that too. seeing as its based on the authors own experience with a dumbass husband.


But when I read it I didnt think of any of that.  To me it was pure psychological horror wich is something quite different from ghosts and vampires scaring you.With those you know why you are scared but in this type of story its a kind of creeping unease because its such a mundane thing as wallpaper but its made into something terrifying because you see it through the eyes of a (possibly) mad person.


All I can say I felt like I was inside the room with the narrator and the ending really stays with you.


You can read this story online





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