Literary Analysis Essay Sample of Kate Chopin's Story of an Hour

Published: 2022-10-18
Literary Analysis Essay Sample of Kate Chopin's Story of an Hour
Type of paper:  Essay
Categories:  Kate Chopin The Story of An Hour Gender in literature
Pages: 5
Wordcount: 1148 words
10 min read

Understanding Fiction

In this story of an hour, the variously complicated situation of fiction has been evident. Giving a close look of the narrator's description, Mrs. Mallard is still struggling towards approaching social freedom. After the news concerning the death of her husband in railroad accident reached Mrs. Mallard, she was afflicted in her heart condition. As sooner the news is given to him by her sister, she responds by sudden grief. She suddenly makes her wish to be left alone in a room upstairs to grief alone. Nevertheless, while sitting alone in the room upstairs he thoughts and state of mind overturn dramatically. This depicts the real fiction of the story as she struggles to reverse her priorities to things of less importance.

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Plot Of The Story

Kate Chopin uses various themes, ideas and styles to bring out the suspense and issues of concern well in the story. When Mrs. Mallard receives her husbands Brently Mallard death news, she suddenly gets outpouring grief. However, after the sorrow and joy that she will enjoy lifetime freedom she moves downstairs only to find her husband had come home. At this point, she realizes that his death was fake news and due to disbelief she collapses and dies. This brings out one protagonist and two antagonists of the story. Mrs. Mallard comes out to be the protagonist of the story since she dominates the conceptualized ideas of the story. Moreover, death and Brently Mallard comes out as an antagonist of the story.

Even though Mr. Mallard seems to be a good husband, immediately his wife sees himself alive, she dies. Moreover , even if Mrs. Mallard did not kill the fact that she was happy to be alienated from him is traumatizing. This makes Mr. Mallard be the antagonist of the delightful short story. This is because he is the root cause of death of the protagonist. Also, death is an antagonist in this story. This because it has been used as a trap to carry away every single character within the story. The idea of death is a threat to many antagonists and the root cause of protagonist death.


The central cause of conflict in this story is the necessity of a woman feeling to fight for independence and socially acceptable life. As the story starts, Mrs. Mallard gets to know about his husband's death she weeps uncontrollably. However, after sobbing up her state of mind changes drastically and he breathes a sigh of relief since the different issue has been solved. The story has different stages which enact complications to the conflict. Mrs. Mallard depicts complexity by how she overreacts towards her husband's death in complex and unexpected ways. Instead of making close follow up to the scenes to ascertain the news she suddenly burst in grief. All this stirs both the internal and external conflict between the antagonist and the protagonist. Through this, the author depicts how great window subjects the climax of the story.


This story is acted in Mallards home. Mrs. Mallard seems to have her room with cozy armchair. Mrs. Mallard appears to be confined within her home setting always because of the state condition of her medication. Her sister Josephine seems so comfortable in the Mallards house. Due to the stay in the house, it may be evident she fears the outside world. When Mrs. Mallards wants to be entirely alone and process her husband's demise, she goes to her private room. In the setting of the story, people move in to bring news and other things, but no one goes out. This brings out the theme freedom and confinement with a style of symbolism and imagery.

Kate Chopin paints Mrs.Mallard a picture of the sympathetic character defined by strength and insight. Mrs.Mallard is stuck in a dilemma of mixed feeling of what is essential between losing a familial tie is a significant loss or regaining the woman independence and moving beyond personal relationship bondage. In our current society, a woman has been confined within the umbrella of husbands power and status. However, windows have found responsibility, legal recognition and exceptional control over their lives. This reflects the idea of Kate Chopin to paint Mrs.Mallard the desire to wish death for her husband.

Narrator point of view

In this story, the author tries to put a message across that we should not be happy with other peoples misfortunes like their death. In the context of the story, Mrs.Mallard appears to live a comfortable life with his responsible husband. The only challenge is that she is denied freedom to enjoy her independence as a woman like others in contemporary society.

Moreover, to my understanding and point of view upon reading the section given, I think Kate Chopin wrote the story to state that you should not believe a truth unless you research about it. The narrator provides us with a picture that even though different marriages are judged to be happy they have been wrong by lack of happiness and too much confinement due to lack of freedom. Kate Chopin states that only the people involved in this kind of marriages can understand what they undergo through. She depicts suspense in the story about what happens when freedom is denied to her as a woman.

A Feminist Perspective

In this story of an hour, Kate Chopin paints a picture on the severe challenges facing marital relationship in our current society. However, in this story setting Kate Chopin doesn't put himself as feminist but she depicts women to be unequal in their roles to the community. This is meant for her to develop a theme of freedom and confinement. She has plotted the idea in the whole story that woman has been oppressed, denied freedom and confined in sorrowful marriages by painting this picture Kate Chopin plots the notion that unions are institutions that have restrained upon marriages. Husband has exercised supremacy into their wives making them feel confined and oppressed. Since the women have been submissive, they had limited option to fight for their independence. Even though the men have been painted as responsible and gentle, women still lack a sense of freedom within them. Women have no precise control over their lives which has subjected them to slavery. Kate Chopin paints the picture of a delicate balance for both women and men in the society regarding marriage.


Mrs. Mallard moves out of the room after grief with a great feeling of victory that she has started a journey of freedom and sense of independence as a woman. She has great anxiety of her future life composed of freedom and doing everything which comes to her mind without restriction. Suddenly after Mrs. Mallard comes out of the room and finds her husband, she collapses and dies. This leaves us with questions of how her life would be.

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