Use of Symbolism in the Yellow Wallpaper

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The Haunting
In the “The Yellow Wallpaper,” Charlotte Gilman writes about a woman who sees herself in a haunting wallpaper and she wants to be free, and the struggle between her and John. John treats her like she is his child instead of his wife. By any man treating their wife like John does will drive her insane. That is exactly what John did, drove his wife crazy enough to make her want to stay in her room, lay in the bed, and stare at the wallpaper. Her husband does not treat her right, talks to her like a child, and makes her stay in her room all alone. Symbolism is a literary device that is used much in this poem. One example of symbolism is the woman being sick and her husband does no treat her with respect symbolizes women’s rights. The woman describes her husband “If a physician of high standing, and ones husband, assures friends and relatives that there is really nothing the matter with one, but temporary nervous depression-a slight hysterical tendency- what is one to do”? (Gilman 1). John is not treating her like a woman is supposed to be treated. He does not want to tell her friends and relatives that she is sick. She tells him that she is sick, but he does not do anything but make it worse because he does not believe that she is sick. Another symbol in the poem is that her husband treats her like a little child. The speaker describes her room as “It was nursery first and then playroom and gymnasium and windows are barred for little children (3). The woman is being treated like a little child by her husband. He treats her like a little child because she lets him control and tell her what to do. John calls her “Little Girl” instead of by her name. The barred windows symbolize her being trapped. So, the room she stays in is for children. The wallpaper symbolizes her being trapped, and the windows symbolize her trying to get away. The speaker says, “I do not like to look out of the window even-there are so many of those creeping woman and they creep sp...
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