Victoria Hubble October 14, 1999 Character Analysis Essay #4 The Story of an Hour, by Kate Chopin is an ironic story because, Louise Mallard realizes the independence that she gains from her husbands death. The moment she realizes this freedom, and is willing to take this new way of life into her arms, her husband returns, and she dies. Mrs. Mallard has a revelation of all these liberations she was going to live with, and within minutes, came to realization of her confinement. Louise Mallards initial reaction to her husbands death was one that any normal person would have except it is characterized by the happiness that overcomes her as the story develops. Although she is upset about the news of her husbands death, she comes to the realization of a completely different lifestyle that she has never known before. Independence or freedom are the major differences between her life before and her life now.
She felt content with her life before, simply because she didnt know any different. She always had someone elses will pushed against her own, whether it was her father or her husband, she has always had someone to control her life for her. As she undergoes this incredible emotional breakthrough, a great amount of weight lifts off her shoulders because she felt how much her opinion impacted others, and at the same time, she realized that she didnt have to listen to someone elses opinions or outlooks on anything. This new emotional insight is a major turning point in Louise life and it is quickly changed by the trauma of her husbands return. Mrs. Mallard realizes that she now has the ability to live her own life.
This realization suffers a drastic change when B rently Mallard, her husband walks in the door. The exorbitant change comes in whe she recognizes that this freedom she has been anticipating is no longer a reality. She is in extreme shock because she was reborn to a new way of life and it was stripped away from her immediately once she acknowledged that she had to live her life with someone else again. She felt like the efforts of her entire transformation of herself was done all for nothing and she might as well die. The Story of an Hour deals with rebirth, emotional breakthrough, and extreme shock. The character Louise goes through these emotions in the period of an hour, as if it were a process.
She changes from a woman who is treated like broken china, to a woman who walks like a goddess. And the irony of it all is, when she has embraced her freedom and the glory of the years before, her husband returns, and the shock and disappointment kills her.