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Conflicts In Kate Chopin's Story Of An Hour

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As can be seen in many formats today, the battle of equality has risen again in the United States. Modern activists can be seen intertwining their beliefs into popular music and social media. However, when this battle was just beginning in the 19th century, social workers did not have access to this kind of technology, and had been restricted to communicating their ideas in other manners. One of the prosperous communicative means of this time period was through different forms of writing. Kate Chopin employed short stories to become a women’s rights activist during the late 1870s. These short stories voiced her message that the women in the male-dominated society were suffering from oppression. Chopin composed many of her stories in a similar…show more content…
Men had pressured women to uphold a specific reputation while maintaining the domestic virtues imposed onto them by these men, which led to a surplus of social dilemmas. Wanting to portray these problems, chopin found a way to integrate them into the conflicts of her own stories. The conflict of Mrs. Mallard demonstrated these dilemmas as she "[strived] to beat...back" ("Story of an Hour" 1) the unanticipated feeling of happiness. Society had made it clear that Mrs. Mallard, being a woman, was supposed to be depressed at the loss of her husband; however, this was not the case since the death of her husband consequently gifted Mrs. Mallard freedom from his unrelenting abuse. This issue would not have been a grueling conflict if Mr. Mallard had lost his wife, since men held all the societal power, and could react as they please. Women, on the other hand, had been expected to act a certain way, regardless of their true feelings on the matter. Chopin witnessed this repression constantly and incorporated such hardships in her stories through the conflicts of these women. Facing a similar dilemma, Désirée's struggles involve "[her] passive acceptance to Armand's rejection...and her...deliberate" (Werlock 1) departure from her home and her life. Social conventional called for women to focus on maintaining the home and raising children, but Désirée was not happy and would never be happy in this situation ever again, and thus arose the conflict. These conflicts highlight the everyday choice Chopin noticed women made between conformity and happiness, and integrated these conflicts to portray these
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