Who is the women behind the yellow wallpaper, who looks out through its bars at the narrator as she sleeps? Why does she creep about the yard and garden at night?
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The narrator insists that there is something to be "found...out" in the wallpaper. She reinforces the idea of the wallpaper as holding a tangible meaning she can unlock, and Gilman may as well be telling the reader to do the same with "The Yellow Wallpaper." Both the narrator and the reader try to "peel off" the top pattern of the wallpaper and the story, respectively, to uncover the deeper meaning below.
It is becoming clearer that the woman in the wallpaper represents feminine imprisonment. In her domesticated prison of the wallpaper, she stays subdued and still in bright spots but shakes the "bars" in darker spots. In another allusion to the sunlight/moonlight motif, Gilman associates brightness with the rigidity and regularity of male oppression, and darkness with feminine liberation.
As her narrative delivery grows more chaotic and staccato, the narrator identifies more strongly with the woman in the wallpaper. Confusingly, when discussing the woman's habit of "creeping" about outside, the narrator says, "I always lock the door when I creep by daylight." She speaks as if she, and not the woman, is the one doing the creeping.