Perspectives on Liberation in Kate Chopin's The Story of an Hour, and The Storm

Perspectives on Liberation in Kate Chopin's The Story of an Hour, and The Storm

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Sometimes the most liberating experiences are those not sought. In Chopin’s stories: “The Story of an Hour”, and “The Storm”, we are exposed to different views of liberation. The opportunity to venture with or without someone will be further elaborated. Furthermore, the act of gaining something is not necessarily always accomplished by addition.
In Kate Chopin’s “The Story of an Hour”, Mrs. Mallard was a woman trapped in a marriage. You quickly realize exactly what type of marriage and level of confinement she was in. When Mrs. Mallard learns of her husband’s death, “It was her sister Josephine who told her, in broken sentences; veiled hints that revealed in half concealing” (Chopin 82). Her reaction is initially not out of the ordinary. “She wept at once, with sudden, wild abandonment, in her sister’s arms” (82). Pain and sorrow would obviously take over. As Mrs. Mallard took to a bedroom, the door would close behind her. No one would understand what she was going through. There is no time frame on ones recovery, but suddenly the idea of freedom would take over. “There would be no one to live for her during those coming years; she would live for herself” (83). A woman, who loved her husband, is finally able to give herself what she never got; love. “She said it over and over under her breath: free, free, free! (82). In a society were woman followed suite, Mrs. Mallard was finally able to live for herself. With her husband being gone she gained her independence. Weak hearted, Mrs. Mallard was full of spirit and ready to take on the world. How ironic that the man who once confined her, was able to set her free. Unbeknownst to her, Mr. Mallard did not parish, “It was Mr. Mallard who entered, a little travel-sta...


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...confines of marriage, as only she knew what she had done.
Mrs. Mallard and Calixta were two women living in a time primarily dominated by men. Neither woman had control in their personal life, or in different scenarios. They both savored control and the ability to be free. Mrs. Mallard had a glimpse of freedom that would last the rest of her lifetime; whereas, Calixta had small a window of time to liberate herself momentarily. With their choice of actions, both women spontaneously thought of themselves only, and went against the grains of society.



Works Cited

Kirszner, Laurie G., and Stephen R. Mandell, eds. Literature: Reading, Reacting, Writing, Compact 5th. Boston, MA: Heinle 2004. 82-83 Print.
Kirszner, Laurie G., and Stephen R. Mandell. Patterns for College Writing: A Rhetorical Reader and Guide, 11th. Boston, MA: Bedford/St. Martins 190-194 Print.

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