Literary Romance Essay

1788 WordsJul 28, 20118 Pages
Kristin Williams Professor Gorum Tu/Th 1250-255 19 July 2011 Feminism and Racism Kate Chopin brings to life real world issues through the characters and plots of her stories. In her short story “The Story of an Hour” readers see the issue of feminism unfold with her main character Louise Mallard. Within this story, the reality of unhappiness is revealed through Louise and her reaction to the death of her husband Brentley. The reader, sees that Louise is stressed daily and feels trapped by the role of being the perfect wife to Brentley within their marriage. After hearing of her husband’s death, the image of an easier life fills the mind of Louise Mallard; whereas in “The Secret Life of Bees,” the reader is shown the issue of racism through the eyes of young Lily Owens. The reality of racism easily surrounds Lily everywhere she turns in her daily life. Lily deals with the issue of racism as she finds friendship in her nanny Rosaleen and the Boatright sisters. Lily finds difficulty as she tries to fit in with the African Americans to get away from her abusive father. In “The Secret Life of Bees,” Lily quickly realizes that racism goes both ways. As the stories continue to unfold, Kate Chopin reveals the similarities of racism and feminism within the stories’ characters. In the short story “The Story of an Hour,” Kate Chopin introduces the reader to the main character Mrs. Mallard. The reader discovers that Mrs. Mallard is married to a mysterious man named Brentley. As the reader, one must remember that during this time being a woman and a wife came along with great responsibilities. In the old days, the duty of being a wife was much different than the role and responsibilities of the wife today. Back then the wife was solely responsible for keeping her household in order along with doing the daily chores. The wife gained little respect from her husband as the

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