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Explore how Gilman presents the search for identity in The Yellow Wallpaper

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Introduction

Explore how Gilman presents the search for identity in The Yellow Wallpaper As is clear in the text, Gilman writes the book from a similar prespective as the narrator. Living in the late 17th and early 18th centuary america Gilman would have experinced similar opression as is eveident in the text, not neccessarily first hand that is. The issue of feminism is central to the identity that Gilman tries to initiate, somewhat ambigously. One thing that is clear is that the identity of the narrotor is certainly opressed, due top the control of John, her husband she is not aloud to express herself turely in either a social or a literary context, therefore masking her true character and identity, although the reader is subject to a better insight as the text is written from her veiw point. This gives the text a certain air of intimacy, as though it were written as a diary. ...read more.

Middle

Interms of the feminism in the novel it is clear that it is driven by Gilman's own experince as an active feminist writer, her other titles including: Women and Economics Man-Made World Herland Making the theme of her work overwhelmingly obvious. The Yellow Wallpaper is not quite as actively feminist as to create the mental images that the titles above are able to do. The Yellow Wallpaper is feminist by interpreation. If the book were written by a man it would seem nothing more than the account of the terrible treatment of a woman. However, as the book is written is by a woman, who was a known and active feminist of the time it is clear that it's use is as an example of the oppression of time. What must be kept in mind is the historical context of book. Modern societie's reactions show that the issues displayed in the book are harrowing, especially the context in which they are displayed, that of domestic oppression. ...read more.

Conclusion

The fact that John is the most oppressive entity deisplayed in the book yet she defends him is also an illogical and therefore curious observation: "John is away all day, and even some nights when his cases are serious" This quote portrays John as an influential and forward thinking medical figure, a respectable and hardworking man. Immediately Gilman is able to undercut this statement by making the diarist unwittingly observe that his diagnosis of her is mor ethen incorrect, but completely naive: "I am glad my case is not serious!" Here we see an intelligent woman, more than able of logically assesing her situation, lose all sense of her identity and submitt to the judgement of her husband. It is obvious to use that her case is serioius and it should be to her because she is the one writing of it but as this quote shows she is not entirelky subjective in herself asessment, as an assertib=ve and educated woman would, the indentity that she is capable of assuming. ...read more.

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