Comparative Analysis of Marriage in "Bliss" and "The Story of an Hour"

1380 Words6 Pages
Comparison of Marriage in “Bliss” and “The Story of an Hour” By: Meghan Schmidt For: English 211 – Janet Hedley-Smith “The Story of an Hour” and “Bliss” follow two young women at the turn of the century. They are both married and are extremely unhappy in their marriages. One is immature, and through her immaturity comes naivety. The other doesn’t have this handicap, and is fully aware of her dissatisfaction with life. Both marriages are restricting, and challenge the protagonists’ concept of self and individuality. In “The Story of an Hour”, Louise Mallard gets the news of her husband’s death from her sister and her husband’s friend. She quickly retreats to the privacy of her own room which her companions believe is to grieve in solitude. In actuality, she shows the reader that she is finally confronting the wasted days of her life, and through that realizes that she has been given a second chance. She reflects on her marriage and we find that, although it was a good one, her husband never knew how unhappy his wife was. She loved him, but dreaded the seemingly endless days with him. The story ends with her husband showing up back at home and Louise supposedly succumbing to her weak heart. “’Bliss” follows the story of Bertha Young giving a dinner party with her husband Harry. It is attended by various guests, including a Miss. Pearl Fulton, to whom Bertha is mysteriously drawn, but to whom Harry is shown to have an intense dislike of. Bertha undergoes a sexual awakening at her party and finds herself with new feelings of desire for her husband, only to find out that he and Pearl are in fact having an affair. Both of these women are existing unhappily as dictated by their circumstances. Marriage in these stories is seen as a contract, rather than a happy, and loving union between them and their partners. Although Bertha tries very hard to

More about Comparative Analysis of Marriage in "Bliss" and "The Story of an Hour"

Open Document