Comparing the Use of Images in The Other Wife and The Story of an Hour Essay

Comparing the Use of Images in The Other Wife and The Story of an Hour Essay

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Comparing the Use of Images in The Other Wife and The Story of an Hour

The Other Wife and The Story of an Hour are two short stories both
seemingly similar and contrasting in different ways. In Chopin’s story
we see that Louise Mallard reveals her ironically natural feeling of
joy and freedom following the news of her husband’s death. Louise’s
sensation of freedom is conveyed through the use of vivid natural
images and color. While in Colette’s story the two female protagonists
contrastingly suffer from repression while the other practices freedom
and liberty. These contrasting feelings are conveyed by the usage of
various color images. Both Chopin and Colette address the theme of
freedom and liberty from male control through the indirect use of
natural, color, and vivid imagery. More often, the natural images are
associated with the setting and the atmosphere, while color imagery is
repeatedly linked to the physical appearance of the characters.

In The Story of an Hour Chopin’s use of natural images develop and
convey the theme of female freedom and liberty. The image of window is
one of the most fundamental symbols which puts across this theme. The
window exemplifies the ‘monstrous joy’ and the ironically natural
freedom Louise is feeling in her following the news of her husband’s
death. This oxymoron can be defined as the feeling she knows is
considered ‘monstrous’ by society who does not expect her to be glad
at her husband’s death. The way in which she faces the ‘open window’
reveals the new beginning she is looking forward to and her
realization of a fresh start without her husband. Furthermore, the
author’s application of an image of a ‘tree’ that were ‘aquiver’ and
the ‘countless sparrows’ whic...


... middle of paper ...


...n Chopin’s The Story of an Hour there is less work for
the readers’ to work out specific hidden meanings. It is much harder
to work out meanings when Alice doesn’t answer when Marc says 'were
satisfied…Aren’t we, darling?’

Throughout the course of the two stories The Other Wife and The Story
of an Hour, the use of natural, color, and vivid images are an
essential tool for both authors to convey the theme of freedom and
liberty from male control. The use of the various types of imagery
shows the similar techniques Colette and Chopin shared. However, there
are some minor differences these two stories shared, such as the use
of dialogues and narratives as well as one being more symbolic than
the other. The use of imagery is just a very small part of all the
other features the writers used to develop the theme of female Freedom
& Rights from male control.

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