Story of an Hour, Everday Use, the Storm

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Kristin Smith
8 November 2009

The theme of a story is whatever general idea or insight the entire story reveals (Kennedy and Goia). In “The Story of an Hour”, by Kate Chopin, the theme is repression and freedom. In “Everyday Use” by Alice Walker, the theme of the story is being proud of your heritage or your background. In “The Storm”, by Kate Chopin, the theme is finding happiness or comfort in other things. In “The Story of an Hour”, the main character Mrs. Mallard, gets news that her husband has been killed in an accident. Her sister delays telling her the news because she has a bad heart, but when she finally tells the news, Mrs. Mallard wants to be left alone. They think that she is very upset by her husband’s death, but in reality she is happy because now she is liberated. “When she abandoned herself a little whispered word escaped her slightly parted lips. She said it over and over under her breath: “Free, free, free!” (Chopin). “And yet she had loved him-sometimes. Often she had not. What did it matter! What could love, the unsolved mystery, count for in face of this possession of self-assertion which she suddenly recognized as the strongest impulse of her being. “Free! Body and soul free!” she kept whispering” (Chopin). This phrase shows that even though she had loved her husband, she was happy that he was gone. Mrs. Mallard would no longer have to live with the husband that had been controlling her all the years that they had been together and she was finally emancipated. At the end of the story, her husband walks through the door and she falls down and dies. The doctor believes she dies from the heart disease, but it is really because her husband is alive and she is no longer free. In the story “Everyday Use”, the two sisters, Maggie and Dee both appreciate their heritages in different ways. Dee the older sister has a new age look on the past, where she wants to show her background but she does not want to the follow the traditions of...
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