Language In Kate Chopin's The Story Of An Hour

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In her short story, The Story of an Hour, Kate Chopin makes it ambiguous as to how Louise Mallard truly feels in regards to the news of her husband’s passing. Chopin’s use of progressively positive language leads many to believe that Louise Mallard is actually delighted to hear that she is now a widow, rather than being anguished like any person would after the death of a loved one. As Louise Mallard comes to terms with her husband’s alleged death, she repetitively “whispers under her breath” the words, “free, free, free” (Chopin 1). Later in the story, she similarly whispers, “Free! Body and soul free!” (2). Although not directly stating it, Louise Mallard’s language suggests she is happy to be liberated from her marriage. The word ‘free’ in itself is word that refers to liberation, openness, and emancipation. Louise Mallard’s use of the word free suggests she felt as if she was a prisoner in her marriage with Brently Mallard. Now that her husband has passed, she is now free to live as she pleases. The use of language that relates to liberation …show more content…
It is true that at both the beginning and end of the short story, Louise Mallard has the heart illness, however, it is unclear whether or not the illness persists throughout the story. It seems that once she believes that she is widowed, her illness dissipates. For instance, after Josephine is checking up on Louise, Louise states that she is “not making [herself] ill” (Chopin 2). The purpose of this quote is to imply that Louise’s feels her condition is improved because of the loss of her husband. As a result, Louise’s conditions is no longer present, thus, the symbol for heart illness can not be applied. Therefore, once it is established that her heart illness is gone, the argument connecting heartbrokenness to Louise’s weak heart is no longer

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