Learning Unit 11

1. The key difference one notices about the images of the “New Woman” compared to the depictions of women in most of the works we’ve read is that they are actually outside. Many of the works we read focus on women in the domestic sphere and their roles in the home. The main conflict in The Yellow Wallpaper is that the main character is confined to her bed and is not allowed to move. The fact that these “New Women” are seen outside must have been shocking to people back then.

2. The discontent of the protagonist of The Yellow Wallpaper stems from her confinement to a room that, right from the beginning, she finds very uncomfortable. The sheer length of time she is forced to stay in that room drives her further and further into madness. Due to the character’s psychosis and obvious mental issues, I find her unhappiness slightly more justified than the protagonist of The Awakening, whose unhappiness stems from her new knowledge that there is more to life than just being a wife.

 

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