Story Of An Hour Literary Analysis

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In the “Story of an Hour” the main character, Mrs. Mallard, receives the tragic news that her husband has been killed in an accident. Her sister Josephine and her husband’s friend, Richards break the news to her as gently as possible because readers learn that Mrs. Mallard “was afflicted with a heart trouble”(Chopin 13). She spends some time alone in her room sorting through a plethora of different emotions and later emerges from her room and descends the staircase to find her proclaimed dead husband opening the front door. She instantly dies from what doctors alleged a heart attack. In this story, Chopin uses characterization, symbolism, and irony in a tremendously difficult situation to illustrate the rebirth of Louise Mallard’s…show more content…
While upon hearing the news initially “She wept at once with sudden, wild abandonment, in her sister’s arms, ”(Chopin 13) readers are lead to believe that Louise is reacting in the same way that any normal grief-stricken woman would. It is while she is locked alone in her bedroom that readers are slowly shown the true sense in which Louise is emerging. She becomes overwhelmed and enveloped with a sense of freedom that she has never known…show more content…
Chopin understandably uses characterization, symbolism, and irony to help convince the reader that Louise was, in fact, the real victim in that she was trapped in a marriage of which she was not happy. Readers are drawn into the mind of Louise Mallard with the characterization and symbolism used to help one feel empathy and understanding for her situation. Louise celebrates after her husband’s death, finds deep within herself her true identity, prays for a long life ahead of her, and loses it all in her untimely death all within the span of an hour. Works Cited Berkove, Lawrence L. “Fatal Self-Assertion in Kate Chopin’s “The Story of an Hour.” Twentieth-Century Literary Criticism. Ed. Janet Witalec. Vol. 127. Detroit: Gale, 2002. Bloom, Harold. Kate Chopin.New York: Bloom's Literary Criticism, 2007. 52-53.Print. Chopin, Kate.(1851-1904). Literature to Go. 2nd Edition. Michael Meyer. Ed. Boston: Bedford/St. Martin's. 2014. 13-15.Print. Koloski, Bernard.Kate Chopin: A Study of Short Fiction.New York: Twayne Pub.,1996.132- 34.Print. Wilson, Kathleen. Ed. "The Story of an Hour." Short Stories for Students: Presenting Analysis, Context, and Criticism on Commonly Studied Short Stories. Vol.2. Detroit: Gale, 1997. 263-77.

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