December 12th, 2011
A Reflection on “The Story of an Hour”
The short story “The Story of an Hour” by Kate Chopin was written in 1894. In the beginning of the story, we discover that Mrs. Louise Mallard has a heart condition, but she is also said to be young. Which to me seemed odd, but I overlooked this detail so that I could continue the story. Mrs. Mallard’s sister Josephine and Mrs. Mallard’s husband friend Richard came to her house to break the news of the death of her husband in a railroad disaster. They tried to tell her the news gently, because of her condition. To them she seemed to react how a new widow should. She wept and collapsed in her sisters’ arms, before running to her room to be alone. This is where the story soon takes a turn. There in her room, she was actually crying because of happiness of the death rather than sadness. Her sister thinks Mrs. Mallard is making herself sick. In the final paragraphs, Mrs. Mallard leaves her bedroom, when her husband walks into the front door, Mrs. Mallard than passes away at the sight of her husband. Structure/ Key Terms
“The Story of an Hour” was told in the 3rd person point of view, which enables the readers to have a better view and understanding of the story. I noticed Kate Chopin used quite a bit of symbolism in the story as well. For instance, Mrs. Mallard welcomes the new spring life through the window of her room. This symbolizes a new beginning of her new life without her husband. The tone is ironically relief and joy, despite the news of death. One would think that sadness and instability would be the tone. However, Chopin uses specific language and details to portray otherwise. My thoughts of the story
“…the present story is not only brief and clear but also compelling and complex, and it easily lends itself to a variety of critical approaches” (R.C. Evans, 2001). This story was very captivating. I was...