Reflection on “The Story of an Hour” by Kate Chopin example

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Reflection on “The Story of an Hour” by Kate Chopin

“The Story of an Hour” by Kate Chopin describes the events of only one hour. Within this hour, the author tries to reflect the whole life of the woman. A wife gets breaking news about her husband’s death in the railroad disaster. Every woman, who loves her husband, would cry and suffer after hearing such news. However, Chopin demonstrates quite unusual situation which is full of contradictory details. The writer describes fresh pictures of spring outside the window, calling them “the new spring life” (Chopin 1).

With these words, she emphasizes on the value of life, calls to appreciate and prize the beauty of nature and every moment of existence. A spring symbolizes a beginning of a new life without the husband and hints on another symbol – a winter, which is associated with marriage. Using the example of contradiction between joyful images of spring and the husband’s death, Kate Chopin tries to emphasize the problem of women’s freedom in matrimony. The question arises whether a woman, stricken with grief, could hear the songs on the street and twittering of the sparrows. Only if one’s heart wants to sing and fly because of feeling freedom, the reaction will be the same. Though the whole story is very short, the general idea is depicted quite clearly. Chopin shows the problem of independence of a married woman. Describing the protagonist, the author demonstrates the absence of her self-sufficiency. The main female character has no freedom; she dreams only about a free soul and body. She is young and beautiful but she waits for a day when her life finishes. The connection between a soul and body is very strong. It is so strong that the absence of the desire to live can provoke some diseases, such as heart disease. The point is that the heart is the weakest organ of human’s body.

Women full their hearts with love, disappointments, happiness, or fear, and sometimes it leads to serious consequences. Thus, the author wants to stress that when a person holds all emotions deep in heart, he/she becomes ill. Chopin demonstrates the main idea of the story with the words “she was drinking in a very elixir of life” (2). The end of the story is tragically sad; however, for Mrs. Mallard, her death was better than the desire to live with her husband.

Socratic Questions:

1. What position should a wife have in a happy marriage?

2. What other authors of the world literature raised the problem of unhappy marriage?

Works Cited

Chopin, Kate. The Story of an Hour. 1894. Microsoft Word …

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