Essay, Research Paper: Yellow Wallpaper And Cast Of Amontillado

Literature: Yellow Wallpaper

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The short story, “ The Yellow Wallpaper”, written by Charlotte Gilman, and
“The Cast of Amontillado” written by Edgar Allan Poe, are stories in which
the plots are very different, but share similar qualities with the elements in
the story. “The Cast of Amontillado” is a powerful tale of revenge, in which
the narrator of the tale pledges revenge upon Fortunato for an insult. “The
Yellow Wallpaper” is a story about a woman, her psychological difficulties and
her husband’s therapeutic treatment of her illness. She struggles over her
illness, and battle’s her controlling husband. The settings in both stories
are very important, they influence the characters, and help with the development
of the plot. In “The Yellow Wallpaper” the setting helps define the action
as well as to explain characters behaviors. The setting is which the story takes
place is in the narrators room, where she is severally ill, and she is “locked
up” in the room which served as her cage. The room in which the narrator is
caged in is a nursery, “it is a big, airy room, the whole floor nearly, with
windows that look all ways. The paint and paper look as if a boys’ school had
used it.” The narrator describes the color of the walls as repellent, almost
revolting, it is an unclear yellow with a dull orange. The condition that the
narrator is in, the repulsiveness of the room, and the room haunting her, drives
her into insanity. “The Cast of Amontillado” takes place in an appropriate
setting, not only is the setting underground, but also in the blackness of the
night. The story begins around dusk, one evening during the carnival season in a
European city. The location quickly changes from the activities of the festival,
to the damp, dark catacombs under the commons. With the setting being so
dramatic, irony plays an important role in the story. Irony occurs when the
reader becomes painfully aware of what will become of Fortunato, even though he
continues his descent into the catacombs in pursuit of the wine. Poe also adds
to this effect, by calling the man Fortunato, who is anything but fortunate, and
has him dressed in a clown’s costume, which portrays him as a fool. While the
settings in the two stories are very different, the different settings create
the elements to the stories. The narrator in “The Yellow Wallpaper” becomes
haunted by the wallpaper in her room. The setting takes place in the room, she
dislikes the room from the moment she sees it and fells suffocated by it. Her
feeling of suffocation and being haunted by the wallpaper helps the reader
become more aware of her motivation for tearing the wallpaper down. In “The
Cast of Amontillado,” the setting creates a different effect. In “The Yellow
Wallpaper,” the setting helps create the story, and sets the actions of the
plot. In Poe’s story he uses the setting different then Gilman. He uses the
setting to create suspense and to give the reader a sense of how the characters
are felling walking through the catacombs looking for the wine. The dark, damp
basement magnifies the tension and uncertainty of the actions in the story.
While the two stories are very different, the settings play a major role in both
stories, without the setting, both stories would have less style and theme. In
“The Cast of Amontillado” the theme of Poes writing ties in perfectly with
the setting. It is important for Montresor to have his victim know what is
happening to him. He will cease pleasure from the fact, that while Fortunato
slowly dies in the wall, he thinks about his rejected opportunities and his
unbearable regret. As he sobers with terror, the final blow will come from the
realization that his life is ending in his catacombs dying with his finest wine.
The catacombs, in which he dies, set the theme, and relate well with the story.
Without the yellow wallpaper in the short story, the significance of the
wallpaper would not mater, nor would it set the theme or plot. At night the
wallpaper becomes bars, and the wallpaper lets her see herself as a women and
her desire to free herself. She needs to free herself from the difficulties of
her husband, and from her sickness. The settings in both, set up the elements of
the stories and ads to the effect in both of the short stories.
Bibliography
Branson, Leigh W. Edgar Allen Poe’s Literary Neighborhood, 17 Mar. 1997*htt://www.geocities.com/Athens
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