“Joy that kills” in “The Story of An Hour”
By phamho. Friday, May 25, 2007 5:08:27 AM
Kate Chopin most definitely was a famous writer and a poet. She lived her life in the way she wanted to and wrote what she felt and wanted to say. Most of her works are about sex, love, and marriage, and some of them were rejected by many publisher at the early of twentieth century. One of her most famous and well-liked masterpieces was the short story “The Story of an Hour”. This story shows the sympathy of the author to a woman's grieves in her marriage.
“The Story of an Hour” is about an ill woman who learns of her husband's death. The story examines this woman's reaction to her sudden and unexpected independence and ends surprisingly when she discovers that her husband still alive.
The first thing to concern is that although there is no obvious evident to show that Mr. Brently abuses and doesn't love his wife, there are some factors that contribute to the fact that The Mallard's marriage an unhappy life. With her heart trouble, Mrs. Mallard was cared as gently as possible. Moreover the preservation from sudden and extreme distress has made her life tedious and flatting. By describing the marital and medical condition of Mrs. Mallard, Kate Chopin poses sympathy toward the feminist in the early of twentieth century.
Another point is that Mrs. Mallard is a subject to male-domination in her family and in the feudal society at the early of twentieth century. At the beginning of the story, Mr. Brently's wife is named as Mrs. Mallard, and her first name, Louis, Is only referred after her husband's death. At the end of the story, with the appearance of Mr. Brently, Louis is pronounced as Mrs. Mallard and once again becomes the property of Mr. Brently. In general, Louis's marriage exemplifies the status of the woman in the early of twentieth century, in which the Patriarch's power will “bending hers”. Mr. Brently may have some love for Louis, but he disregards Louis's happiness. The fact that they have no child shows that there is no sexual relationship in their marriage and “The lines (On Louis's face) bespoke repression”.
Kate Chopin Inspires a victory feeling for her female character, Louis, just in a short period of time. Louis manifests her joy as being an independent widow_” There was a feverish triumph in her eyes, and she carried herself unwittingly like a goddess victory”. Later on, the masculine discourse once again destroys Louis at the end of the story. The return of Mr. Brently leads Louis to the death, and the doctor declares that the cause of the death is that “She has died of heart disease_of joy that kills”. Kate Chopin eventually sets her character free by the death. Instead of retaining the status as Mrs. Mallard, the author emancipates Louis to another life where she will be no longer a subject to the patriach's power. It is the greatest final sympathy of the author to her feminist character.