Name English 23 June 2011 Analysis of ‘The Story of an Hour’ Kate Chopin’s short story, ‘The Story of an Hour’ is a vivid portrayal of a female character who dares to approach the death of her husband and her new status as a widow with a sense of self-rejuvenation and a feeling of freedom, from the oppressions of her marriage…
Though initially aggrieved at the death of her husband, she gradually begins to embrace her fate as a widow with an optimistic perspective. The story therefore is a psychological recording of the aggrieved female character who feels liberated from the chains of oppression, eventually only to ironically meet her own end, when her supposedly deceased husband appears before her at the end of the story. Kate Chopin’s greatness in portraying the story of Louise Mallard lies not only in the content of the story, but also in her choice of words, vivid imagery and finally in the dramatic irony at the end that catches every reader by surprise. The entire story, while presenting a perspective that would have easily shocked many readers of those times, nevertheless stays very close to reality. Louise Mallard’s response, for example gradually evolves from one of grief to a sense of rejuvenation. She is initially seen to weep because of ‘sudden, wild abandonment’, (Chopin) after which she retires alone into her room, giving up to a sense of ‘physical exhaustion’ (Chopin) which is then followed by a sense of rejuvenation, or rather a sense of undeniable freedom. Within this evolution of her feelings, Kate Chopin encircles the reality of the character’s life. ...
Thus, the gloom, the oppression and the physical exhaustion of her past is gradually overcome with the vivid and rejuvenating images of ‘the spring of new life’, with ‘delicious breath of rain in the air’ and the ‘countless…twittering’ of sparrows and with a peaceful atmosphere roofed by ‘patches of blue sky’, (Chopin) which she views from the window of her room (the window thereby serving as another image of freedom). The storm of grief and the gloom now lie quite forgotten along with her heart trouble, which according to Jennifer Hicks, was never an indication of heart disease but rather pointed to the fact that her marriage had not ‘allowed her to live for herself’ (2002). The vivid imagery drawn by Kate Chopin thereby give an irrepressible feeling of re-awakening and the reader can in fact visualize Louise Mallard rising before their eyes, breaking away from the repressive marriage and surrendering herself to the ‘brief moment of illumination’ (Chopin) that was determined to possess her. The gradual evolution of her emotions that is established by the writer therefore serve in strengthening her character. Critic Daniel P. Deneau writes, ‘If immediately after learning of the death of her husband Louise had gone through a rapid logical process leading to a celebration of her total freedom, she might have seemed to be a hard, calculating, and therefore unsympathetic woman’ (2003). While women of the time were expected to bemoan the death of their husband and their status as a widow, Kate Chopins determines herself to present a new perspective through the character of Louise Mallard. The sense of rejuvenation, experienced by the character is therefore an assertion to the people of the time who denied women their basic rights. Through ...
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The story of an hour is linked to the Women Liberation Movement, which was a political movement in born in 1960. The feminist of the time took a stand to fight for women freedom in America. American wives in the late 19th century were legally bound to their husband’s power and status.
A Critical Analysis of Social Expectation in “The Story of an Hour” and “A Sorrowful Woman” Introduction On the surface level, both Kate Chopin’s “the Story of an Hour” and Gail Goldwin’s story, “A Sorrowful Woman” deal with the protagonists’ reactions to what the society expects from them.
Her reaction and the events that follow form the plot of the story. The story ends when it turns out Mrs. Mallard’s husband is alive. The news that her husband is not dead shocks her to death. Different interpretations are given to the story, especially in regard to the ending; most people assert that the story can be given a feminist interpretation, and that the story is about the oppression that women often face in marriage.
Chopin, an American writer, and Chekhov, a Russian playwright, both address the issue of marriage in their different works. Even though Chopin and Chekhov portray the same theme, they deal with different aspects of the matter and the genres and styles are dissimilar as well.
1 Name Professor’s name Class Date The Story of an Hour – Literary Analysis Order No. 838183 Introduction ‘The Story of an Hour’ is a scintillating short story by Kate Chopin that got published in 1894. Throughout the course of history, we find that women had lesser rights and opportunities to pursue their careers or the dreams when compared to men.
As a result, closer inspection of good short stories usually reveals a much deeper meaning within the text that commonly reveals some important commentary upon the major issues of the time. By focusing on key elements of the environment in which the characters move and through
She looks forward to the beginning of a new life, which she can live as per own convictions. She sits alone in a room, perhaps brooding over the next course of action. The sad incident deeply touches her inner
This paper analyzes Mrs. Mallard and describes how these stylistic devices relate with her character.
Mrs. Mallard’s experience exemplifies the clash between marriage and the individuality of women. The feeling of elation and freedom in
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