The Story of an Hour

June 28, 2017 General Studies

“The Story of an Hour” by Kate Chopin (1894) In “The Story of an Hour” Mrs. Mallard who “was afflicted with a heart trouble” goes through a lot of mixed emotions after hearing that her husband died in a railroad accident. Kate Chopin uses symbolism, figurative language and irony properly to describe Mrs. Mallard’s feelings and emotions through the story. Mrs. Mallard also feels that she has been trapped in a marriage where she was prisoner of her husband and realizes that it is time for her to live for herself without repression.

Professor A’s thesis asserts that most of Kate Chopin’s stories were fiction. The interpretation of Professor A. also suggests that “The Story of an Hour” could have been inspired by a personal experience of Kate Chopin when she was a child. There is no evidence from the text to support this interpretation. The text focuses on Mrs. Mallard’s story not on Kate Chopin. The interpretation is clearly written and organized but does not have enough supporting points to strengthen the argument which makes it less persuasive compared to the other two.

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Professor B’s thesis states that “Overbearing husbands are the likely cause of multiple problems, including many varieties of physical, emotional and mental dysfunctions. ” This interpretation of the text is supported by the fact that Mrs. Mallard clearly finds happiness out of her husband’s death. There are some relevant quotes such as the one found in the twelfth paragraph where Mrs. Mallard says that “There would be no one to live for during those coming years; she would live for herself. ” Even more quotes could have been used to strengthen the arguments Professor B is trying to make.

Another fact that could have been argued is that her death was the ultimate freedom from her miserable marriage. Besides, the interpretation is neither clearly written nor organized and that makes it less persuasive compared to Professor C’s. On the other hand, Professor C’s central thesis argues that “A life without freedom is no life at all. ” The interpretation supports the thesis with evidence from the text by using symbolism, figurative language and irony. Professor C explains the relationship between the evidence and the thesis by providing some examples, in this case “the open window in Mrs.

Mallard’s room symbolizes the freedom that will come to her in widowhood”. Another quote that Professor C uses to exemplify the figurative language is when Mrs. Mallard “was drinking the elixir of life through the open window. ” Finally Professor C argues the irony of Mrs. Mallard situation, “When Bently Mallard returns home, very much alive, she apparently dies of heart disease—the joy that kills. ” Professor C concludes the interpretation supporting the thesis, “life without freedom is simply not worth living. Professor C’s interpretation was clearly written and organized and I found it much more persuasive compared to the other two interpretations. In conclusion, Professor A’s argument needs more evidence from the text. Professor B provided evidence from the text but the interpretation is not very clear and needs to be more organized. Contrarily, Professor C provides a thesis that is supported with evidence from the text. It is clearly written and organized and that is why this interpretation is more persuasive.


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