Story Of An Hour Essay

645 WordsOct 24, 20083 Pages
Kate Chopin was a brilliant writer who was able to turn the nation on its head by her bold feminist short story, “The Story of an Hour.” Set in the nineteenth century, Chopin’s leading lady Louise Mallard was a repressed wife who dreamed of the day she would die so that she would be free of living up to the ideals of society. In Kate’s era, arranged marriages were common and divorce was unacceptable. A divorcee was scorned in public and couldn’t own any land; a widow on the other hand was able to inherit all properties and possessions left behind by her husband. Throughout her story Kate Chopin shed some insight on her thoughts and feelings towards society’s standards for women. In the beginning of the story we learn Mrs. Mallard’s husband, Brently Mallard, was killed in a train accident. Brently’s friend Richards rushed over to her house to break the news gently to Mrs. Mallard because she suffered from a fragile heart. Throughout her story, Chopin gave us the first names of the characters except for Mrs. Mallard. We didn’t learn her first name until after she received the news of her husband’s death. This signified that Mrs. Mallard was known only as Brently’s wife and didn’t have a true identity of her own until she was freed from her marriage. This reflected times when women were just supposed to be happy about being mothers and wives and not think about themselves or what they wanted. After learning about the death of her husband, Louise began to feel treacherous emotions warring inside of her. Society demanded that she mourned the loss of her husband for a year; she, however, was beside herself with joy at the thought of finally being free. “There would be no one to live for during those coming years; she would live for herself. There would be no powerful will bending her in that blind persistence with which men

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