Kate Chopin’s Life and “the Story of an Hour” Essay

1158 WordsFeb 16, 20135 Pages
Kate Chopin’s Life and “The Story of an Hour” Kate Chopin grew up in an unconventional and maternal Louisiana family in 19th century. The environment she was raised in formed her independent thinking and non-submissive character. In most of her works, we can see the reflection from her own life experiences. “The story of an hour” is one of the most famous and controversial works in her life. Being raised by three widows greatly impacted her view of the world and reflected directly on her works. Kate’s father died in a railroad accident when she was only 4 years old. After his death, Kate had to live with her mother, grand-mother, and great grand-mother, the three widows. Because of the death of all males in her family, there was no opportunity for Kate to have family education from her father or grand-father like every normal family. There was no male role model for her too during her childhood. The absence of male role in her family “prevented her as she matured from experiencing in her own family the traditional submissiveness of women to men” (Skaggs 2), despite that she was taught to be submissive to men. In Kate’s work of “The Story of an Hour”, this part of her life experience which helps us to understand better as to why Mrs. Mallard felt happy instead of deep sad and helpless after her husband’s “death”. Kate never compromised with the traditional submissiveness, and she planted this point deeply into the protagonist’s mind when she composed this story. As a result, the strong will to be free from the shadow of her husband was released violently after Mrs. Mallard knowing the news of her husband’s death. In spite of not being her intention, however, only her husband’s death could make Mrs. Mallard feel “There would be no powerful will bending her in that blind persistence with which men and women believe they have a right to impose a private will

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