Summary Of The Story Of An Hour By Kate Chopin

Decent Essays
The Story of an Hour

The Story of an Hour written by Kate Chopin describes more than an hour of Louise Mallard’s life. “The story is narrated by third-person who is not present in the story” (Berenji, 2012). It gives you a glimpse of her entire life in an hour and what she has dreamed her future would be like without her husband Brently. Louise Mallard, who is she? Some would say she is an extremely fragile and ill woman who learns of her husband’s sudden tragic death. She locks herself in her bedroom to mourn alone and dream about how life would be without her husband. But, in that same hour she would learn that her husband is not dead, which then lead to her own demise.

The story about Louise Mallard tells of her life through her eyes,
…show more content…
The story talks about events that presumably happened in Louise Mallard’s life in one hour. Louise’s story actually depicts more than an hour of her life. The first thing I learned about Louise was her heart condition. For instance, Louise heart problem seems to be a physical and mental representation of her unhappiness in her marriage and longing to be free. So, telling someone like Louise that her husband Brently is dead would be devastating to someone with heart problems, it could cause that person to die, but she does not die, she begins to weep uncontrollably. During this period Louise heart seem to be stronger than ever. Though Louise loved her husband, Louise thought with her husband dead, she would be free from his chains. “Some critical interpretations depict Louise's awakening to her new freedom as a widow as a rejection of the status quo, a similarity to Chopin's Edna Pontellier in The Awakening” (Diederich, 2012). Louise reveals that both men and women tend to lose part of themselves when they become dependent on each other. Louise cried because of the loss of her husband Brently is a natural reaction to the loss of a love one. No one never suspected Louise was crying for any other reason, but for Brently’s death. Alone in her room, her heart races, and her entire body felt warm. She spreads her arms open, figuratively relating to her new life. Louise’s …show more content…
Louise died of overwhelming joy is ironic because it had been the loss of joy that had actually killed her. Indeed, Louise seems to have died of a broken heart, caused by the sudden loss of her much-loved independence.

References:

Berenji, F. Q. (2013). Time and Gender in Charlotte Perkins Gilman's "The Yellow Wall-Paper" and Kate Chopin's "The Story of an Hour". Journal Of History, Culture & Art Research / Tarih Kültür Ve Sanat Arastirmalari Dergisi, 2(2), 221-234. doi:10.7596/taksad.v2i2.231

Kirszner and Mandell, (2012). Portable Literature: Reading, Reacting, Writing, Ninth edition. Lit. Wadsworth Cengage, Boston.

Diederich, N. (2012). Sharing Chopin: Teaching "The Story of an Hour" to Specialized Populations. Arkansas Review: A Journal Of Delta Studies, 43(2),

Related Documents

  • Decent Essays

    This short matter of time is only the beginning of the irony in the story. Louise first appears to be sad for her husband’s death, at least that is what the author wants readers to believe. Once her sister told her the news: “She wept at once, with sudden, wild abandonment, in her sister’s arms.” (15). When she finds comfort alone in her room in the armchair facing an open window she cries for a while. Soon after her tears are gone finds a sense of…

    • 874 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    Her sister and friend are the ones who have to deliver the message. They are afraid to tell Mrs. Mallard that her husband died in an accident. They know that any stress could potentially kill her. When they give her the terrible news, she weeps (as any wife would do) but then goes up into her room and looks out the window. “Free” she whispers, realizing that while her husband’s death is sad, it is also positive because now she is bound to no one.…

    • 873 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    Later on in the story Mrs.Mallard dies because she could not fathom the idea of her husband being in control of her life again. One would assume that death allowed her to keep her freedom. Even though people believed she died of a heart attack, in reality she died because she was afraid of being in bondage again. That was implied from the last line when Chopin says, “When the doctors came they said she had died of heart disease—of joy that kills.” In the Necklace Madame Loisel died emotionally from the moment she married her husband because she believed she deserved more in life. She did not believe her life had value, “she was as unhappy as though she had married beneath her;” She longed for something she had and that was the attention of man.…

    • 1231 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    In addition to, The Story of An Hour describes how a woman puts herself at risk by becoming over-excited after hearing the news of her husband’s death. Kate Chopin reveals different aspects of these characters’ lives that all respond in one common way, the remorse for their decisions. In the story Regret, the main character, Mamzelle Aurelie found being alone quite…

    • 796 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    She shows devastation, “She wept at once… wild abandonment”(Chopin, Pg. 1). This quote is trying to tell us how she burst out at the news of her husband has died and she is trying to mourn during this time. Louise feels a sense of disbelief because when someone you finds out about death they feel like it can't be happening. Next Louise Mallard starts having these feelings of curiosity of what it is going to be like to be free during the story when she is alone she says, “Free, Free!”(Chopin, Pg.…

    • 849 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    She had a heart disease and any seriously shocking moments could trigger a fatal heart attack. Mrs. Mallard is an unsympathetic person based on her desire to become a widow, the perceived joy and freedom of her husband’s death, and the shock she faces when she realizes her husband is still alive. Mrs. Mallard felt stuck with no power and desired to become a widow because a widow had almost as much power as a man. She had two people watch over her because of her heart condition- her husband’s friend and her sister.…

    • 842 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    When the doctors arrived they said she had died of heart disease, “of joy that kills” (Chopin 21). Everything that Mrs. Mallard had escaped and was now looking forward to doing with her new life was suddenly ripped away from her just by that door opening and getting a glimpse of her husband. By analyzing the response and change in attitude of Mrs. Mallard from the beginning of the story to the end it can be seen that the Mallard’s marriage was one that had been taking a toll on Mrs. Mallard for an extended period of time. She was never granted any freedom and was always being held…

    • 1132 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    Independence, openness, and powerless all play key roles in how the theme is developed throughout the story. In the beginning of this story Louise is devastated, as any person who lost a loved one would be. She confined herself to a room and just took in her husband’s death. While locked in the room, she comes to notice that she allowed herself to be control by her husband because she did not assert her own will. As Louise thinks, she says, “There would be no one to live for during those coming years; she would live for herself.…

    • 924 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    In “The Story of an Hour” by Kate Chopin, Louise Mallard is the main character who has an unhappy marriage, and her husband is Brently. She has heart problems and is treated like a fragile woman by her sister, Josephine, and by her husband’s friend, Richards. When Josephine tells her about Brently’s death in the train wreck, Louise feels sorrow because of her husband’s death; however, she recognizes her freedom after she thinks that her husband is dead. The main character…

    • 1615 Words
    • 7 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    Another example, is when Mrs. Mallard cries, and the audience would think it is because she is sad but she is crying tears of joy. The dramatic and verbal irony in the story is how the death is diagnosed as "joy that kills" (477). Obviously, Mrs. Mallard did not die from joy, but the actual outrage that went through her after realizing her husband was alive, and her life was not going to change. Another example, is when Josephine, Mr. Mallard’s sister, thinks she is grieving her husband’s death she is actually rejoicing, “When she abandoned herself a little whispered word escaped...."free, free, free!"(477). [This is a good use of an integrated…

    • 797 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Decent Essays