Kate Chopin launches her short story by introducing the main character, Mrs. Mallard. Mrs. Mallard is considered the protagonist, the person who the story is centered around. She is described physically as "young with a fair, calm face,.." and someone who possesses "two white slender hands" (Chopin 15), which indicates that she is a youthful, pretty women who does not engage in manual labor. In the first sentence, her fragility is revealed, "Knowing that Mrs. Mallard was affiliated with a heart trouble,". Instantly, a critical analysis should commence. Why would a young female during 1849 suffer from heart trouble? According to WebMD.com, premature heart disease is caused by stress and is prevalent in individuals who fail to have proper stress management skills. This is supported in line 8 "whose lines bespoke repression and even a certain strength". Chopin uses "lines" to indicate Mrs. Mallard 's feeling which she shields. Consequently, the internal force, "repression", foretells the conflict of the story.
Continuing with the characterization of Mrs. Mallard, the idea of her being weak and submissive is portrayed,"there will be no powerful will bending hers" (Chopin 16). Line 1 emphasizes her delicacy. At the beginning of the story, after finding out about her husband 's death, her sister, Josephine, ...
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...e crushed at the sight of her husband. Her short lived independence is drastically snatched away from her. Ironically, the sight of him made her devastated that he was alive. Instantly, her heart trouble reappeared and this time, it fatal. Her husband 's death emancipated her to the life she always wanted, a life the was quickly taken away from her. This disappointment kills her.
In the end, Chopin 's protagonist, Mrs.Mallard, undergoes a series of emotional changes. She progresses from an emotional state of depression, to a feelings of joy. Like many women during her time, Mrs.Mallard was tired of tradition and wanted to be free. However, she was privileged to taste this freedom which only lasted for an hour. Although short lived, her glance of a new life was so revitalizing that her husband 's suddenly reappearnce not only killed her dreams but her also.
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