The Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Perkins Gilman, adapted by Julie Hoverson

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First published in 1892, The Yellow Wall-Paper is written as the secret journal of a woman who, failing to relish the joys of marriage and motherhood, is sentenced to a country rest cure. Though she longs to write, her husband and doctor forbid it, prescribing instead complete passivity. In the involuntary confinement of her bedroom, the hero creates a reality of her own beyond the hypnotic pattern of the faded yellow wallpaper – a pattern that has come to symbolize her own imprisonment.
In Julie Hoverson's excellent rendering, the story came across as a tale of an apparently "normal" state of affairs gone horribly wrong.  The story begins ordinarily enough, with the narrator relishing her new life in the country, with its apparently idyllic surroundings.  In the background, we hear Mozart trilling away, suggesting that this is a perfectly ordinary, if not pleasurable experience, akin to listening to pleasant music.  However, from the beginning onwards, there are warning signs; the narrator seems too willing to defer to her husband John's judgement, allowing him to control her life to such an extent that she appears to have little freedom of movement.  As the narrative unfolds, so the speaker becomes increasingly desperate to create an alternative reality of her own, inspired by the yellow wallpaper.  From one point of view, we witness a woman gradually imprisoned by her husband experiencing a mental breakdown; from another point of view, however, Hoverson's reading suggests that she had found a space for herself, unpoliced by those males - the doctor, her husband - who try to control her life.  She has discovered freedom, even if it is only imaginative in concept.