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The Yellow Wall-Paper

             "A colonial mansion, a hereditary estate, I would say a haunted home, and reach the height of romantic felicity - but that would be asking too much of fate!" begins the setting for this short story by Ms. Gilman. The story quickly turns from a romantic get-a-way for the summer to the underlying dominance of the well respected Physician of his wife. The downstairs bedroom offers plenty of amenities John (the physician) decides that the upstairs bedroom which covers nearly the whole floor would be better suited for her recovery from depression. Is one of the first of many examples of his determination to control his spouse during a time of "serous mental condition". The room with yellow wall-paper symbolizes the unsaid battle between the husband and wife.
             The wife suffers from a "nervous condition" and John prescribes medications and tonics to help her control her symptoms of mental illness. Although not directly confirmed in the story the wife has doubts about taking her regime of medicines and feels that her husband must know best. "So I take phosphates or phosphites - whichever it is, and tonics, and journeys and air, and exercise, and I am absolutely forbidden to "work" until I am well again." Not only does he prescribe medications and tonics he also determines it is best not to get outside and exercise or work. .
             John decides that the upstairs room would be best location for their bedroom to enhance her recover from mental illness. "I don't like our room one bit. I wanted one downstairs that opened on the piazza and had roses all over the window --- but John would not hear of it." The narrator reluctance over the choice of a bedroom demonstrates that she is unhappy with the selection but is unwilling to voice her opposition. John feels that this room is best suited to meet her needs but is it the amenities of the room that makes his decision.
             It is in the chosen bedroom that the title of the story is taken.

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