Literary Works Referring to the Mental Illness Essay

  • Length: 6 pages
  • Sources: 4
  • Subject: Literature - Authors
  • Type: Essay
  • Paper: #14215718

Excerpt from Essay :

Mental Illness

In the social environment, mental illness is a serious condition and with an advancement of technology and modern science, the physiological issue surrounding a mental illness is not well understood. The stigma that place on people suffering from mental illness is so much making people pretending that they are not suffering from the problems. Although, many people were not born with a mental problem, however, the societal burden can make people demonstrating signs of mental disorders such as depression and irrational behaviors.

The objective of this paper explores the concept of mental illness illustrated in different literary books.

Literary Issues on Mental Illness

This study investigates the issue of mental illness in the literary books with a focus on "Sylvia Plath's The Bell Jar," (Ames 1) and "Charlotte Perkins Gilman's "The Yellow Wallpaper." (Gilman 1) The study develops personal connection and similarities between the two characters and their mentally unstable characteristics. Based on the biographic aspects of both women, their mental health deteriorating, and they committed suicide despite that their societal effects and literary accomplishment that allowed them living on.

Charlotte Perkins Gilman is best known for her book titled "The Yellow Wallpaper." "The Norton Introduction to Literature" (Gilman 1). Gilman was known for her contribution to her feminist intellectualism and crusade journalism who pioneered the women rights. Typically, Gilman was concerned about the social injustice, political inequality of women, and the marriage institution during the era. Gilman argued that relegating women to a domestic status were an intention to rob them of their power of intelligence and creativity.

"The Yellow Wallpaper" (Gilman 1) is drawn heavily on the episode of Gilman personal life. In 1886, Gilman's first marriage was stricken with a severe case of depression making her indulge in ceaseless tears and unbearable inner misery where condition worsened with the presence of her baby and husband. She was later referred to Dr. Mitchel, a leading specialist for the nervous disorder. After Gilman's diagnosis, Mitchell believed that Gilman was suffering from depression and mental illness brought about by the domestic affairs. Moreover, the case of Gilman showed that she was suffering from the nervous breakdown because she was prevented from working. Afterward, Gilman abandoned Mitchell, and her mental condition improved. Gilman also made a scandalous decision by leaving her child and husband, Charlotte Perkins Stetson took the name Gilman after her second marriage, and she later started a successful career as a lecturer, publisher, and journalist. After moving to California, she wrote a book titled "The Yellow Wallpaper," which narrated her personal experience. In the book, she made a chilling description of a woman who fell into madness because she was put into the fate of a paternalistic culture.

The literature titled "The Norton Introduction To Literature" (Gilman 1) illustrates the issue of mental illness on different characters used to complete the book. In the literal community, some of the most profound and greatest issues are the result of the depressed mind. Typically, there seems to be a connection between loss and sadness with individuals. For example, Ernest Hemmingway was the greatest writer ever lived who had suffered from depression and inevitable committed suicide, which seem to be a common issue among most famous writers. A better literary story that discussed the issue book titled "The Yellow Wallpaper" (Gilman 1) and written by Perkins Charlotte Gilman. The book is a story of a woman who had a mental confinement in her mind leading to a depression saddened because of her baby. Moreover, the woman is suffering from the post- Partum depression leading to the overall sense of unhappiness. It is evident that the narrator in the book is quite erratic with an evident that she is suffering from psychosis.

In her book, Gilman states, "A colonial mansion, a hereditary estate, I would say a haunted house, and reach the height of romantic felicity-but that would be asking too much of fate!"(Gilman 478). The statement reveals her current circumstances, showing that she was avoiding the issue that made her sad. The view also revealed that she was incredibly eccentric reading into things far too much. As being revealed in the book, Gilman also suffered from continuous and nervous breakdown leading to melancholia that made her consult a doctor. As stated in her except

"Why I Wrote the Yellow Wallpaper," "The wise man put me to bed and applied the rest cure, to which a still good physique responded so promptly that he concluded that there was nothing much the matter with me, and sent me home with solemn advice to 'live as domestic a life as possible,' to 'have but two hours intelligent life a day;' and 'never to touch pen, brush or pencil again as long as I lived."(Gilman 511).

Sylvia Plath was a gifted poet, who had a moderate childhood. Born in Massachusetts, her father had diabetes, which caused the doctor to amputate his leg. The issue traumatized Path and…

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