What Time Period is The Yellow Wallpaper Set in?

A

Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s The Yellow Wallpaper is set in the time period of the late 1890s and early 1900s. The main reason is that the story is based on Gilman’s own life. It can be a semi-memoir as well.

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The time period setting of The Yellow Wallpaper is around the publication date of the book itself. It was in 1892 when the short story first appeared. The book reflects the author’s own struggles with mental issues. The story promotes feminist values and clearly addresses the neglect of women’s mental health problems. The story reflects how female citizens did not have a voice in terms of a choice of their own treatment. It was common to diagnose women with hysteria or depression in a temporary form at the time. The story also describes that patriarchal values lead to unfair treatment and spread false opinions.

For example, the main character’s sister blames her for writing and keeping a diary in sickness. In other words, female mental health issues were neglected by society. They were seen as something temporary with no evident cause. In addition, both genders condemned not “normal” activities for the woman’s role. Lastly, the setting of the story has the same connotations as feminism’s first wave. The movement also took place in the late 19th century and early 20th century. The dominance of the main character’s husband is prominent. It shows that women had no autonomy.

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