The Story of an Hour Analysis

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In “The Story of an Hour,” by Kate Chopin, Louise Mallard is a dynamic character who went from a state of grieving to being overjoyed by her new freedom. When she first hears of her husband’s death, she is overwhelmed with misery. After reflecting on what happened, she looked outside and realized the new life ahead of her.

Louise Mallard in the beginning of the story mourned like any other house wife would. Her emotions took over her and she was “pressed down by a physical exhaustion that haunted her body and seemed to reach into her soul” (15). If she was happy in the beginning, then this expression would be hard to fake. The news is not only affecting her emotionally, but it is taking a physical toll on her too. It would be even more difficult to feign when “her bosom rose and fell tumultuously” (15).

The change starts with her realizing that “something was coming to her and she was waiting for it, fearfully” (15). Louise Mallard begins to think that her husband’s death might not be as bad as it seems. When the idea creeps its way into her head more, the emotional roller coaster she went on made it difficult for her to fight the thought. This change shows how Louise Mallard went from grieving to being happy about her husband’s death.

Unlike the beginning of the story, Louise Mallard is now happy about her husband’s death. She is joyful that now that “she would live for herself” (16). There will be no more of her husband’s orders to follow. She is not totally heartless about her husband though. She knows she will cry at the sight of his body, but the thought of being free made her overjoyed.
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