Ah, the slow descent into madness.....

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EL266   Yellow Wallpaper

"I tried to lift and push it until I was lame, and then I got so angry I bit off a little piece at one corner--but it hurt my teeth."

Yep, she's crazy. I do enjoy the progression though. I really like the way Gillman's character's own writing, as well as her behavior, gets progressively more delusional and obsessed. All underlying themes aside, (talked about those the first couple times I read it), the writing is interesting in and of itself. That is one of the pleasures of first-person writing, beyond simply telling a story, the writer gets the chance to show a change through the telling of the story, as well as the story itself. It reminded me a bit of Flowers for Algernon...Keyes I think wrote that....forgot the first name. Anyway, the main character, the narrator, is mentally handicapped, but becomes gradually smarter after some medical experiment, this is reflected in his writing. Overall, I enjoyed the story.

2 Comments

Gladys Mares said:

I agree with you that she is totally delusional and obsessed. However, I think this stems from the relationship with her husband. Did you notice how he treated her like a child? I think the way he talked down to her made her stay preserved in this naive and childlike state. I think this story could go both ways, either about a crazy woman or a jab at the institution of marriage at the time.

Dave said:

That's possible, though because the narrator is delusional it could very easily go either way. Overall though, because her husband is also a doctor, I think the Dr./Patient relationship is more significant. It's impossible to say whether or not he would have treated her that way had she been sane.

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