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Discovering Freedom in Kate Chopin’s The Story of an Hour Essay

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Discovering Freedom in Kate Chopin’s The Story of an Hour


As humans, we live our life within the boundaries of our belief systems and moral guidelines. Yet, one unexpected event can suddenly knock us out of our comfort zone and thrust us into a completely different arena. Such is the case of the central character in Kate Chopin’s “The Story of an Hour.” Louise Mallard, upon hearing the news of her husband’s tragic death then subsequent revelation of its fallacy, finds herself quickly moving from grief, through a sense of newfound freedom, and finally into the despair of the loss of that freedom.

After learning of her husband’s death in a railroad disaster, Mrs. Mallard sinks into a deep state of grief, as one would be expected to do upon receiving such news. She weeps uncontrollably until she can weep no more. Finally, she seeks refuge alone in her room, accepting comfort from no one. Physically and emotionally drained, Mrs. Mallard sits in a chair in front of an open window. Through that window begins a realization that haunts her as it creeps into her consciousness, and mo...


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