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Kate Chopin's The Story of an Hour

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In Kate Chopin’s “The Story of an Hour” allows one to explore many ironic instances throughout the story, the main one in which a woman unpredictably feels free after her husband’s assumed death. Chopin uses Mrs. Mallard’s bizarre story to illustrate the struggles of reaching personal freedom and trying to be true to yourself to reach self-assertion while being a part of something else, like a marriage. In “The Story of an Hour” the main character, Mrs. Mallard, celebrates the death of her husband, yet Chopin uses several ironic situations and certain symbols to criticize the behavior of Mrs. Mallard during the time of her “loving” husband’s assumed death.
In the “Story of an Hour” we observe many instances in which irony takes place. According to the Urban Dictionary irony is “a situation that is strange or funny because things happen in a way that seems to be the opposite of what is expected.” Therefore one of the main ironic situations that happen is upon the central character, Mrs. Mallard, not much is told about her character, but we do know she has a heart disease and she is a dedicated house wife. Mrs. Mallard’s heart trouble is one of many symbols in this story, Chopin does not tell us much about her but we can interpret that Mrs. Mallard’s heart trouble should not be taken literal, it is a sign of her unconsciously surrendering her heart, her identity as an individual, it is a meaning of how she sees herself.
She is now told her husband died so she runs to her bedroom to be left alone. While her sister and family friend are downstairs feeling sorry for her and thinking she is destroyed, Mrs. Mallard comes upon an unsuspected feeling that she is now “free.” Since this story was written in 1894, which was a very tough ti...

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... her with joy this sense is only experienced while being confined in her bedroom. And as soon as she leaves her room, the freedom she’d just begun to understand is now taken away from her in an instant. She actually died of sorrow and great disappointment of her husband’s return as he waited at the front door.
Throughout the story Chopin uses many ironic instances and symbols to illustrate the meaning of several major aspects of the story, we learn a lot more of the main character Mrs. Mallard and we come to an understanding that she did not recognize a world outside of herself.

Works Cited

Ewell, Barbara. "Kate Chopin." The Role of the Wife and Mother. 19 Dec 2013.
"Dream dictionary." Windows. iVillage. 19 Dec 2013. .
Urban Dictionary. 18 Dec 2013. .
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