ComparativeAnalysis: The Yellow Wallpaper & A Rose from Emily
“ARose for Emily” by William Faulkner and “The Yellow Wallpaper”by Charlotte
PerkinGilman are two stories which have a lot in common. Any reader wouldmost likely perceive the main characters in the stories are crazyhence turning them into crazy stories. The theme of oppression andpsychological subject matter are indubitably outstanding in the twostories. “A Rose for Emily” talks about a woman named Emily wholives a very lonely life apparently due to a secluded lifestyle, herfather’s predominance over her lifestyle and Homer Barron’srejection. However, murdering someone just so you can keep them toyourself or because they rejected you is an embodiment of madness.“The Yellow Wallpaper” on the other hand is a story about a womanalso rendered captive by her own husband due to her psychologicaldisorder. This study mainly purposes to explore the two storiesrelative to comparative analysis. The study seeks to find out how thenarrative in each of the stories depict confrontation between a stateof madness and in the event depict a more chilling story between thetwo. Based on the circumstances surrounding the two main charactersin the two stories, it is arguable that some behavioralcharacteristics can be brought about by external factors.
Analysis and Argument
Themadness in each of the two stories does not seem contrived ornaturally occurring. In the story “A Rose for Emily”, in whichEmily is the main character, Emily’s madness is peaks when shedecides to murder Homer just so she could have him forever afterHomer rejected her. Her greatest motive must have been loneliness. Soby murdering Homer and keeping him by her side she could get rid ofher loneliness by feeling Homer’s presence. Narrowing down to theroot cause it this madness exhibited by Emily, we can attribute hercreepiness to three main surrounding factors Homer’s rejection,her father, and seclude lifestyle. On the other hand, the story “TheYellow Wallpaper” in which Jane is the main character, she isforced to be a prisoner to her husband’s commands to stay isolated.The husband believed that Jane is mentally deranged and plans ontreating her through isolation. Perhaps Jane’s inability to beheard and the manner in which she interpreted the wallpaper in herroom made her husband think that she had a mental disorder. If thisis the case, as it so appears, then the husband is the cause of hermadness. Generally, the phenomena that seem to cause the madnessexhibited by the two characters is isolation and loneliness.According to Bond (2014), people’s minds are capable of doingbizarre things should they be separated from other humans for a longtime. An examination of the two cases reveal the concept of isolationamongst the two female characters, Emily and Jane.
Theeffects of the madness revealed by Emily in “A Rose for Emily”and by Jane in “The Yellow Wallpaper” have detrimental effects.Emily ends up being a recluse and goes ahead to kill Homer so she cankeep him for herself regardless of the fact that the man is dead. Shetherefore ends up trapped in a condemned home after her father’sdeath and the man of her dreams dead too. Basically, the effect ofloneliness experienced by Emily and the factor that her father keptchasing off her suitors transformed her into a mentally derangedvictim or a psychopath thinking that killing someone is the easiestway to make them be with you. This is undoubtable madness. On theother hand Jane’s story reveals a woman who have been transformedby isolation and loneliness into delusional character who sees itnormal to creep and crawl in the room. The wallpaper depicted Jane’snature. The two characters are literally tortured by isolation andmale predominance which cause astonishing turnout of creepy eventstowards the end of the stories.
Thenature of madness depicted in this story is a forced madness. It isquite evident that in the two stories decision making is dominated bymen to an extent that women are left with no voice even on mattersdirectly influencing their lives. The men forced the women to betrapped in loneliness and isolation while exercising the ancientculture in which women in which women opinions were never reallytaken seriously. Apparently, the psychological mindsets of Jane andEmily transformed into madness after they could not withstand thetorment brought about by isolation and loneliness.
Thenarrative depicts different forms that dominate its structure. First,omniscience is a dominant technique employed by the males, that is,Jane’s husband, her brother and Emily’s father. The males seem toknow everything and hence display a superior attitude towards thefemales. For instance, Jane’s husband and the brother decide thatshe has a mental disorder and isolating her in a room is one steptowards treating her. On the other hand Emily’s father does notwant any of her suitors around her. The first and second personparticiples are evident when Jane tries to distinguish her old selffrom her new self. Also the narrator in “A Rose for Emily” is notquite revealed. These elements make the stories interesting byhelping to drive the main theme home.
Evaluation and Interpretation
Inthe story “A Rose for Emily” I believe that the presentation ofmadness is more interesting that in “The Yellow Wallpaper”.Emily’s messiness isn’t contrived. The two stories presentcharacters who have mental disorder except that the extent of madnessis presented differently in both stories hence the distinction. InFaulkner’s story Emily is depicted as an extremist. However, themost interesting part is that murder to her does not seem like a bigissue like it would seem to almost everybody. She thinks of Homer’sdeath as the only peaceful way to end the mystery of lonelinesswithin her. Furthermore, she seems so cool about it. This isbasically oblivion technique, and doing something wrong withoutknowing it is wrong seems awesome in Faulkner’s story.
Basedon the circumstances surrounding the two main characters in the twostories, it is arguable that some behavioral characteristics can bebrought about by external factors. This study has comparativelyanalyzed the stories “A Rose for Emily” by William Faulkner and“The Yellow Wallpaper” by Charlotte Perkin Gilman. The main themehere revolves around the two main psychotic characters in each of thetwo stories. However, the most disturbing thing is the existingoppression in the two stories. The study points out the perception of‘women being there to be seen and not to be heard”.
BondMichael. HowExtreme Isolation Warps the Mind.BBC. (2014, May 14). Retrieved fromhttp://www.bbc.com/future/story/20140514-how-extreme-isolation-warps-minds (Web).