Story of an Hour/Bliss Essay

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  • Topic: Death, 2002 albums, 2000 albums
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  • Published : November 12, 2008
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Irony is a statement or action whose obvious meaning is hidden by a contrary meaning. In both endings of Story of an Hour and Bliss irony is used. In Story of an Hour, the characters and the doctor believe that Louise died “of joy that kills.” (p.97). However, the readers know that her death was from an unspoken and completely different cause. From the moment Mrs. Mallard had received news that her husband had died, she was overjoyed. She began to visualize a new, free life. With her husband dead, she could finally be in control of her life and live for herself, “There would be no one to live for her during those coming years; she would live for herself. There would be no powerful will bending hers in that blind persistence with which men and women believe they have a right to impose a private will upon a fellow-creature.” (p.96). At the end of the story when Mrs. Mallard sees her husband walk through the door, she dies. The ending of the story is ironic because her death is believed to be caused by the great joy of seeing her husband alive. However, seeing her husband alive made her realize that the free life she envisioned just moments before was unachievable. The disappointment of seeing her husband was what actually killed her, not joy. Similarly, the ending of Bliss is ironic as well. Throughout the story, Bertha seemed to be exceedingly happy with her life, “’I’m too happy – too happy!’ she murmured. And she seemed to see on her eyelids the lovely pear tree with its wide open blossoms as a symbol of her own life.” (p.136). She believed she had everything. Her and her husband, Harry, were in love and got along great. They had a baby together, a nice house and garden, and plenty of friends. She especially liked her friend Pearl Fulton. She met Pearl at a club one night and instantly fell in love with her strangeness and beauty. The irony in the ending of the story is when Bertha finds out that her husband is having an affair with Pearl, the woman he told...
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