Nowadays, freedom is a fundamental right for each man and woman, but it is not a perfect concept. When one’s freedom is endangered, he can do unimaginable things, especially when love is at stake or can react weirdly when he acquires it. It’s exactly what Kate Chopin, a female American author during the 19th century, did when she treated about women’s conditions in the short-story Story of an Hour in 1894, where a woman falsely learns about his husband’s death. Almost 60 years later, Roald Dahl wrote Lamb To The Slaughter, set in Great Britain, where a woman kills her husband and hide the evidences cleverly. These two short stories are not only comparative on the two female protagonists and the imagery used, but also on the main themes
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Mallard as a free woman and as if she was beginning a whole new life. Mr. Mallard would represent winter, a cold and rigorous character that rule over everything but at the moment he dies, spring appears. It is exactly what happens with Mrs Mallard, she reborn as soon as her husband is thought dead. Although both authors used imagery to enhance their stories, in Lamb To The Slaughter, it is much more implicit than in Kate Chopin’s story.
The imagery in Lamb To The Slaughter has a very powerful but subtle importance. Indeed, in the title itself, the choice of the word ‘lamb’ that signifies a baby sheep that does nothing really important but following the herd due to its weakness. Mary represents the lamb, she does everything to please her husband, exactly like a slave would do to please his master. She gets his slippers, his alcohol, his supper but she is still weak and under domination. At the moment she kills her husband, she also suppress the lamb that represents the weak Mary. Through all her stratagems to hide the evidences, she finally kills the lamb, or slaughter it as suggested in the title, by making the detectives eat the leg of lamb. It is not for nothing that she reacts with a ‘giggle’ after they acknowledged that the leg of lamb was probably the weapon, because she knows that she is not a lamb