The Storm - Kate Chopin

Topics: Mary, White, Family Pages: 5 (1227 words) Published: November 9, 2012
KATE CHOPIN (1850-1904)

She was an American author of short stories and novels. She is now considered by some to have been a forerunner of feminist authors of the 20th century.

Chopin was born Katherine O'Flaherty in St. Louis, Missouri. Her father, Thomas O'Flaherty, was a successful businessman who had emigrated from Galway, Ireland. Her mother, Eliza Faris, was a well-connected member of the French community in St. Louis.

KatherineShe was the third of five children, but her sisters died in infancy and her brothers (from her father's first marriage) in their early twenties. She was thus the only child to live past the age of twenty-five.

After her father's death in 1855, Chopin developed a close relationship with her mother, grandmother, and her great-grandmother. She also became an avid reader of fairy tales, poetry, and religious allegories, as well as classic and contemporary novels.


In literature, regionalism refers to fiction or poetry that focuses on specific features – including characters, dialects, customs, history, and landscape – of a particular region. Kate Chopin is considered to be one of the best US Southern regional writers.


"The Storm" is a short story by the American writer Kate Chopin, written in 1898. It did not appear in print in Chopin's lifetime; it was published in a volume called “The Complete Works of Kate Chopin” in 1969.

in 1969.
The story is set in the late nineteenth century at Friedheimer's store in Louisiana, and at the nearby house of Calixta and Bobinôt.

• Bibi: four-year-old son of Calixta and Bobinôt
• Calixta: mother of Bibi
• Bobinôt: husband of Calixta and father of Bibi.
• Alcée Laballière: former Calixta’s beau (lover).


• The main topic in the story is the sexuality, a topic not publicly discussed in 1898. For this reason, the story was not published during her lifetime. The relationship between Calixta and Alcée holds a degree of passion absent from their marriages. Calixta's sexuality is directly tied to the storm.


The Chinaberry tree being struck by lightning is also representative of Calixta's sin in a Catholic area, where adultery is considered a sin that is so grave that it sends them to hell unless they repent before they die.[1] [2] This piece was written at a time when faith was beginning to be questioned.

The narrator begins by describing Calixta as a worrisome wife, but, after Alcée notices her for the first time in five years, the description shifts to her youthful beauty. Calixta's husband, the reader assumes, no longer looks at her the way Alcée does. He sees her as a real woman, but she pretends that everything has changes especially after having a child. After the rain stops "the sun was turning the glistening green world into a palace of gems." This could symbolize new outlooks on the two lovers' marriages.

The point of view is 3rd person omniscient.

The story also highlights images of purity. White imagery is introduced at the beginning of the second section when Calixta unbuttons her white blouse at the neck. When we see the interior of the house for the first time, the narrator describes the "white, monumental bed." When the sexual tension is released, the sexualized purity reaches a climax; her neck, exposed by the act of unbuttoning, is white, and her breasts are "whiter." She is "as white as the couch she lay upon," and her passion is described as a "white flame." Added to this seemingly paradoxical use of white are the references to the Virgin Mary. While Assumption is a place name, it is also the feast that celebrates the bodily ascension of Mary into heaven, a metaphorical description of what has just happened to Calixta, and, to further the connection, "her firm, elastic flesh" is compared to a "creamy lily." The lily is Mary's flower.


The Storm

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