Literary Elements In Kate Chopin's Story Of An Hour

1403 Words 6 Pages
December 5, 2014
Jennie Mallory
EN 213
Kehler
Literary Elements in Chopin 's “Story of an Hour”

To portray a conflict of internal emotions that are associated with a patriarchal society is a difficult task to accomplish. However, Kate Chopin succeeds in conveying her opinions of society to her readers through her captivating literature. In her short story, “Story of an Hour,” Kate Chopin illustrates the rapid emotional evolution of a dependent wife’s mental state that switches to one that delights in her new-found independence, and then is immediately transformed into a mental state of horror as she realizes that her independence is taken away. She intertwines the conventions of literary elements of narrative literature. Chopin
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There are specific structural techniques that Chopin employs in the story so that to heighten the drama. The structure, which has been chosen for the story, fits the subject matter well. This is a very brief short story that consist of paragraphs that have no more than five sentences. The short structure of the plot features one intense hour that Mrs. Mallard contemplates over her new freedom after she has heard the news that her husband is dead. When Mrs. Mallard is engrossed in her profound, wild conscious, the readers are also engrossed during the small snippet of time. Chopin shocks the readers Mrs. Mallard 's elated reaction when she whispers that she is “free” (283). The readers are shocked again at the conclusion when she dies upon the return of her husband Mr. Mallard. At the end of the story, the reader gets to read about the heart disease that echoes the heart trouble that is discusses at the start, which intensifies the twist ending that brings the story to a satisfying end. When Chopin was writing this story, she left no room for flashbacks, background information, or even excessive speculation. By doing this, she has succeeded in making every part of the story important through employing an almost poetic writing …show more content…
In her article “Kate Chopin, February 8, 1851-August 22, 1904,” Sara Davis states “ 'The Story of an Hour ' turns on a series of artful modulated ironies that culminate in a somewhat contrived ending” (Davis 65). The first of these several instances of this occurred when Mr. Mallard 's friend, Richard, makes sure to affirm his name with a second telegram. However, towards the end of the story it turns out that Mr. Mallard is not even involved in the accident (Chopin 284). Another example of irony is stated when “Her pulse beat fast, and then the coursing blood warmed and relaxed every inch of her body” (284). The very thing that is the representation of life, which is blood, is the very thing that is described in the end of her life. Another ironic point is made in the statement: “She breathed a quick prayer that life might be long. It was only yesterday she had thought with a shudder that life might be long” (284). The irony is that her prayer was answered on her husband 's behalf, but not for her in that she died from a heart attack. In addition to this irony of life and death, the readers are confronted with yet another strong use of irony in this short story. The oxymoronic “monstrous joy” that describes Mrs. Mallard 's initial elation with the news of independence from her husband differs from the joy that is described in the last line of the story (284). The doctors use the word “joy”

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