The Importance of Dialect and Names in Kate Chopin's The Storm

The Importance of Dialect and Names in Kate Chopin's The Storm

Length: 876 words (2.5 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Excellent

Open Document

Essay Preview

More ↓

The Importance of Dialect and Names in The Storm


Kate Chopin is able to put life into her characters in her short story The Storm because she has lived a life similar to that of the people in it.  She was raised by her French Creole mother, which explains her ties to Creole in her story.  She married a wealth New Orleans cotton broker and in 1888 he died.  She was left with no money and six children so she turned to writing as a means to raise them.  The characters in her story depict life in the Cajun area of America and it shows in the nature of their ways.  She does this by giving them real characteristics that can make them seem more real.  Among these characteristics are their names and their dialect.


    Chopin's use of Creole names in her story allows the reader to get a glimpse into the life of those living in French Creole areas.  Names such as Bibi and Bobinot aren t common names to most living in other parts of the country.  Because of this, readers are given a chance to read the story believing the characters to be real.  Had their names been common such at John or Eric, the story would become unreal in the sense that it would be difficult for Chopin to make the reader believe that the story takes place in a Cajun-like surrounding.


    Furthermore, other names in the story serve as a piece of the story setting as well.  Bibi s wife Calixta is a good example of this as is Calixta s man friend Alcee Laballiere.  Their names alone give you a sense that the story isn t set in just any area.  Though Chopin doesn t ever say where the setting of the story is, but something insignificant like the names can be used to help the reader make his or her own assumptions.  I got the sense that it was set in a Cajun area of the United States due to the French names.  Bobinot and Laballiere are unmistakably French in nature and due to the fact that Cajun areas are heavily influenced by French, Chopin made a setting without ever having to actually say it.


    Another way Chopin sets the mood of the story and makes it feel more believable is by giving her characters a Cajun slang in their conversations.

How to Cite this Page

MLA Citation:
"The Importance of Dialect and Names in Kate Chopin's The Storm." 14 Dec 2019

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

A State of Mind in Kate Chopin’s "Storm" Essay

- During the Victorian women were sees as slaves to their house hold. Kate Chopin uses the beginning, climax and resolution of the story as a storm. Throughout the story she uses vivid imagery and careful word choices in order to add detail to the dramatic plot of the story. Kate Chopin’s "Storm" represents something much greater than a weather phenomenon but a metaphysical symbol that represents freedom of choice, and women birthright"; Kate Chopin also describes how men are the creators of these storms....   [tags: Kate Chopin, Storm]

Research Papers
1091 words (3.1 pages)

The Two Storms in Kate Chopin’s story “The Storm" Essay

- In Kate Chopin’s story “The Storm” it talks about love and lust. It speaks of two kind of storm that occurs. These two storms I find to be the central part of the story, and is being represented as a symbol within the story. The first storm is the most obvious one that Bibi and Bobinot are faced with. The second storm isn’t that visible for it involves Calixta and Alcee. Just as like most storms they come and pass. As the story begins we find Bibi and Bobinot on their way home. They were at Friedheimer’s store; they notice the dark clouds flowing with evil intentions to the west....   [tags: Kate Chopin, Storm, ]

Research Papers
610 words (1.7 pages)

Essay on Kate Chopin 's The Storm

- Kate Chopin’s short story “The Storm” exposes the audience to the unfair realities of love and sex during the late nineteenth century. In this story, unhappy marriages, and old, unrequited love draw the two main characters together in a secret affair during a violent storm. Set somewhere in the south of Louisiana during the 1890’s, The Storm gives us a glimpse into the lives of women that many literary works written in that time period shy away from. The purpose of this short story is to symbolize the repression of women, and how they were forced to hide their sensual natures to maintain the wholesome and motherly image that society required of them....   [tags: Marriage, Short story, Love, Kate Chopin]

Research Papers
1340 words (3.8 pages)

Criticism of The Storm by Kate Chopin Essay

- Criticism of The Storm by Kate Chopin While it has traditionally been men who have attached the "ball and chain" philosophy to marriage, Kate Chopin gave readers a woman’s view of how repressive and confining marriage can be for a woman, both spiritually and sexually. While many of her works incorporated the notion of women as repressed beings ready to erupt into a sexual a hurricane, none were as tempestuous as The Storm. Kate Chopin was a woman whose feminist viewpoints were far ahead of her time, which of course garnered her more than her share of criticism....   [tags: Kate Chopin Storm Sexuality Essays]

Research Papers
651 words (1.9 pages)

Essay on What's Hidden In Kate Chopin's 'The Storm'

- What's Hidden in Kate Chopin's "The Storm". Kate Chopin's the storm is about a woman named Calixta who rekindles a lost romance with a former lover in the midst of a storm. This story centers on lost love and being stuck in relationships that are unwanted. There is a lot of hidden meaning in the story, told well behind the characters and their surroundings, and it also has a strong plot, and a lot of symbolism. The plot of a woman and a man rekindling a lost romance in the midst of a storm is one with a lot of innuendos....   [tags: Kate Chopin]

Free Essays
1548 words (4.4 pages)

Kate Chopin 's The Storm Essay

- If Susan B. Anthony, Alice Paul or Lucy Stone were known as the most famous activist in history for the women’s right, people cannot forget to mention Kate Chopin whenever they talk about the author who contributed to Feminist movement in the world at the end of 19th century. Kate Chopin’s short stories were usually seen as the affirmation of the human rights, especially the right to life and the right to happiness and freedom of all women in male-dominated society. One of the most outstanding writing of hers that completely represents for a progressive outlook and incredible talent is “The Storm”....   [tags: Marriage, Wife, Kate Chopin, Short story]

Research Papers
832 words (2.4 pages)

Feminine Sexuality and Passion in Kate Chopin's The Storm Essay

- Feminine Sexuality and Passion in Kate Chopin's The Storm        In Kate Chopin's short story The Storm, the narrative surrounds the brief extramarital affair of two individuals, Calixta and Alcée. Many critics do not see the story as a condemnation of infidelity, but rather as an affirmation of human sexuality. This essay argues that "The Storm" may be interpreted as an affirmation of feminine sexuality and passion as well as a condemnation of its repression by the constraints of society.             If one is to attempt to interpret The Storm, it becomes necessary to examine the conditions surrounding the story's genesis....   [tags: Kate Chopin Storm Essays Papers]

Research Papers
2339 words (6.7 pages)

A Storm of Emotion in Kate Chopin's The Storm Essay

- The Storm of Emotion Usually a storm creeps upon us, hits a luminous climax, and then fades away into nothingness.  In The Storm, Kate Chopin develops a parallel between a rainstorm and an emotional storm in a woman’s life.  Chopin uses symbolism to depict the feelings of relationships that are as unpredictable as that of a raging storm.     In the time frame that this story is set, many major life decisions things are made taking into account one’s duty to family - including the selection of a husband or wife.  It is possible that each of these couples may not have been in love,  when their vows were stated.  They have a duty to society; they must not marry outside of their social c...   [tags: Chopin Storm Essays]

Research Papers
801 words (2.3 pages)

Foreshadowing in Kate Chopin's The Storm Essay

- Foreshadowing in The Storm Effectively using foreshadowing in a piece of literature enhances the reader's curiosity. One clear example of such usage is seen in Kate Chopin's writing. Her use of foreshadowing in the short story "The Storm" adds an element of intrigue, holding the reader's interest throughout. In this story a father and son, Bobinôt and Bibi, are forced to remain in the store where they were shopping, waiting for an approaching storm to pass. Meanwhile, the wife and mother, Calixta, remaining at home, receives an unexpected visit from a former lover of hers, Alcée....   [tags: Chopin Storm Essays]

Research Papers
1069 words (3.1 pages)

Use of Subtle Details in Kate Chopin's The Storm Essay

- Use of Subtle Details in The Storm Effectively describing the relationships between characters is one vital component to a great piece of literature. Without a fundamental understanding of what the characters are feeling and a sense of where they are coming from, a literary work is a puzzle with missing pieces. A variety of tools exist for authors to accomplish this goal. Such information can be provided outright, as in a flashback, or an author may chose to rely more heavily on subtle tactics....   [tags: Chopin Storm Essays]

Research Papers
1166 words (3.3 pages)

Related Searches

  Their language has the same sort of effect on the story as their names did.  The language gives the readers a chance to make the assumption of where in fact the setting of the story takes place.  In fact, the language gives the aspect of true Creole life more so than the names can.  The language gives the characters depth and more life like characteristics.


    A good example of how their dialect is line by Calixta when she is speaking of the storm.   If this keeps up, Dieu sait if the levees goin  to stan  it!   That whole sentence is full of personality and character.  Her use of French words in her English is an obvious example of where it is she comes from.  In few places would one be able to hear language such as this.  Chopin does a great job incorporating such detail into her work.  Without language such as this it would be hard for one to take such an interest in the story.


    Another way the dialect influences the story is that it gives the characters a stereotyped image.  Upon reading their lines, I was given the impression that they were perhaps less educated than others who read the story.  Perhaps it is unfair to say this based on their dialect because that may just be the dialect of all Cajuns, educated or not.  I cannot honestly say whether it is or not but I m sure others who read the story have the same thoughts.  Their conversations with one another can give the impression that they don t have all the amenities of others.  The way the characters speak can give the idea that they perhaps live in a shack with even chickens in the yard and nothing but the basics to live on.  All this can be imagined by just reading the words they speak and listening to how they say it.


    Things that seem so small in detail such as the names Chopin gives to her characters or the way they speak their lines can easily create a whole new picture in the story such as the time and the setting.  Names such as Bibi and Calixta or speaking in a different tongue makes a story and without them the story would not be complete.  Had Chopin given Calixta an IQ of 140 and put her in the same shack, sewing on the same fabric, the story would not have worked.  Chopin knew this and used her own experiences to her advantage.  It was because of these small details that give her short story such a real feeling upon reading it.  The Storm is a good short story that makes use of the fact that it appears to be real in order to win over the readers.

Return to