Response to Kate Chopin’s “The Story of an Hour”

I consider The Story of an Hour a great story. The narrative takes several twists and turns that render its ending quite ironic and unpredictable. Considering the time in which the story is dated (1894), it is interesting that Louise realizes the oppressive nature of the male chauvinistic society. Overall, in most works written during this period, it was quite rare for women to speak of having undesirable long lives with their husbands. Upon learning about the death of her husband, Louise’s perception of a long life shifts from dismay to hope.

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Louise is visibly the character of interest in Chopin’s story. Through her, the reader is able to vividly see the social subjugation that women underwent during that time, since Louise is a representation of women of that time. Women were imprisoned into marriages that were undoubtedly loving and oppressive at the same time. Chopin uses poignant language that conveys the feelings and emotions of her characters, thereby adding splendor to her story. While Louise embodies all women of that time, she is unique. After learning about the death of her husband, she does not react like the rest of the women (Chopin 2). It is interesting that many women blindly accepted to be inferior to of their husbands who exercised control over them.

After receiving the news about her husband’s death, Louise gets into her room and looks out through the window (Chopin 3). This depicts the ironic joy she feels for being set free. Rather than being dark and gloomy, the sky expresses patches of blue clouds and birds singing, and creating a delightful breath of rain, thus symbolizing Louise’s ultimate freedom from an unhappy marriage.

 

Works Cited

Chopin, Kate. The Story of an Hour. Blackstone Audio, 2013.