The Literary criticism of the"The Story of an Hour" by Kate ChopinIn "The Story of an Hour", Kate Chopin demonstrates a woman's struggle with self discovery and stereotypical roles of marriage.Mrs.
Mallard find's herself confronting freedom for the first time upon hearing that her husband has died.Kate Chopin had a similar experience as her character, "The shock of her husband's sudden death in 1883, which left her raising six children, seems to have plunged Kate Chopin into writing." (Chopin110).
Many of Chopin's stories describe how a woman truly feels to the contrary of what they should feel and what role they should play.In "The Story of an Hour" Chopin takes you into the mind of Mrs. Mallard's inner most thoughts as she foresees her future life without her husband. There was a railroad disaster and it is reported that Brently Mallard was killed.Brently Mallard's friend Mr. Richards was the first to receive the news and he tells Josephine, Louise Mallard's sister.
Louise Mallard, wife of Brently Mallard has a heart condition and with fear of complications Josephine tells her the message lightly. "She wept at once, with sudden, wild abandonment, in her sister's arms. When the storm of grief had spent itself she went away to her room." (Chopin516) Mrs. Mallard wants to be alone.She sits down facing the window soaking in exactly what this means for her and her future.When she realizes that it's not a feeling of abandonment but a feeling of freedom.
"There would be no powerful will bending hers in that blind persistence with which men and women believe they have a right to impose a private will upon a fellow-creature." (Chopin517). Josephine knocks on the door to get Mrs. Mallard to come out of the room.With Mr. Richards waiting downstairs the two sisters make there way down when Brently Mallard begins to open the front door.
He's in fact alive.Mrs. Mallard then falls to her death. The doctor's had said, "..
.she had died of heart disease–of joy that kills" (Chopin517).The beginning of the story has a somber tone when the news of Brently Mallard was reviled to his wife Louise Mallard.Upon hearing the news Mrs. Mallard felt "a storm of grief had spent itself she went away to her room alone.She would have no one follow her." (Chopin516).
From this point on the story begins to become a more positive tone as we travel through Louise Mallards thoughts in a limited omniscience point of view. Although Mrs. Mallard is initially grief stricken she quickly seems to realize the suffocating burden of her marriage was lifted upon her.
As she sits facing the window, the author uses imagery to compare to how Mrs. Mallard is thinking "…the tops of trees that were all aquiver with the new spring life. The delicious breath of rain was in the air." (Chopin516).The author also uses sound stating, "The notes of a distant song which some one was singing reached her faintly, and countless sparrows were twittering in the eaves." (Chopin516).Mrs.
Mallard was seeing the beauty and freedom in life as if she had never seen it before.The sparrows were representing her thoughts of freedom that she was trying to fight back.In society it would not be right to have these thoughts.
Mrs. Mallard was known as a wife and nothing else.Mrs. Mallard finally.