Girl Interrupted vs. the Yellow Wallpaper

Topics: Charlotte Perkins Gilman, The Yellow Wallpaper, Physician Pages: 3 (1082 words) Published: April 2, 2005
The main character in Susanna Kaysen's, "Girl, Interrupted" and Charlotte Perkins Gilman's, "The Yellow Wallpaper" are similar in the fact that they both were suppressed by male dominants. Be it therapist or physicians who either aided in their mental deformities or created them. They are similar in the sense that they are both restricted to confinement and must endure life under the watchful eye of overseers. However similar their situations may be, their responses are different.

In the stories, there were both positive and negative aspects and characteristics that the two protagonists possessed. Both women were thought insane and although they may not have been originally, being locked up made other characters question their sanity. In, "Girl, Interrupted," Kaysen's character was a passive yet promiscuous eighteen year old woman. Ten minutes into her visit with an analyst, Kaysen is being told she's tired and that she needs a rest. The therapist makes a couple of phone calls, puts Kaysen in a cab and sends her off to the psychiatric ward at McLean Hospital. In the cab, she doesn't put up a fight or try and escape and once she arrives at the hospital, she signs herself in because she is of age. Even before then, while she was still in the therapists' office she showed no sign of struggling against the force that was her doctor. Instead she willingly accepted the fact that she was tired and to go then rather than on Friday to the hospital. This passiveness is a dominant characteristic of Kaysen throughout the rest of the story. But I view the trait as both a positive and a negative one. It seems like it would be a positive because Kaysen allowed herself to enjoy her time in the hospital. She made an effort to make the best of the situation. However, it's also a negative trait to possess for the simple fact that had she fought or argued with the doctor or the cab driver, she would never had to go near McLean. During her taxi ride to the hospital she said, "I...
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