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Ginger

In: English and Literature

Submitted By neha7469
Words 603
Pages 3
Introduction:
The Story of an hour is a short story written by Kate Chopin whose feminist ideas rocked the world in the early in the mid 1800’s where women’s lib movements were in their infancy. The lack of control over their lives make female emancipation a distant dream and it was due to the death of a loved one that much cherished independence of self could be attained. Kate Chopin lived life on her own terms and in her works allowed her support of women’s independence and sexual freedom to shine through which was shocking to the society still warped in long skirts and layers of petticoats. She focused her attention on love, sex, marriage, women, and independence and raged against the unjust world which viewed women as a lawful property. Her assertion that self matters above all love comes through brilliantly and the protagonists cry for freedom triumphs over her love for her husband.(Chopin)
Plot overview:
The story describes the one hour in the protagonists life where in she experiences heart wrenching grief, ecstasy of freedom and death. Louise Mallard is a typical housewife who is beset with the familiar problems awaiting the arrival of her husband. Her sister, Josephine at the beginning of the story breaks the story of her husband’s fatal accident gently and Louise cries in her arms with wild abandonment. The reader is introduced to the mysterious heart trouble which Mrs Mallard suffers from and this ailment keeps its date with Mallard’s destiny till the very end. After this one showing of grief, Louise moves in to her comfortable room with a stuffy and comfortable chair and watches out to the open world which lies before her. This is where her true feelings come in to picture.(Chopin)
She feels the rush of exhilaration which she cannot put a finger on to, but continues to examine her feeling as nature slowly opens herself. The trees quivering with new life, the delicious breath of new rain, the countless sparrows twittering in the trees and the pedlar singing down in the street all bring in new joy which was hitherto unnoticed and discounted in the mundane movement of life. As the sky opens up its patches of blue she recognizes this new feeling which as the first rush of freedom and bursts upon the world with her lips singing, bosom heaving and the mind dancing with the single word “free, free, free”. The vacant stare and terror fades from her eyes and this new found life brings in blood coursing upon her veins relaxing her to open her arms to welcome her new phase of life. (Berkove)
Her sister and friends fear for her and begs her to unlock the room and this monstrous joy was blinding her being wherein she would not be part of any another’s life. Louise realises that life which lay before her was hers alone without nay imposition from other beings. Love seems at last trivial in the face of self assertion and with a feverish triumph in her eyes she claimed the world as the goddess of victory, but alas walks in to her husband’s arms who had been spared from the accident. The sudden collapse of her world was too much her heart could bear and Louise collapses from her malady which others interpret as her joy of seeing her loved one again. (Berkove)
Works Cited
Berkove, Lawrence L. "Fatal Self-Assertion in Kate Chopin's 'The Story of an Hour.'." American Literary Realism (2000): 152-158.
Chopin, Kate. "The Story of an Hour." http://www.vcu.edu/engweb/webtexts/hour/ 1894.…...

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