At first, she does start crying, but after having some time to herself, she begins to whisper “Free!” (Chopin 426). Louise understands that she has this new-found freedom from the oppression of Brently, and that is why she seems both happy and upset. Even though he loved her, he still oppressed her. This leads to the conclusion that even though Brently was kind with his “tender hands” (Chopin 426) he still had the ability to oppress his wife even if he did not mean to.
With “A Sorrowful Woman,” Gail Godwin crafts a tragic tale of what appears to be an overburdened mother and a loving husband desperately trying to hold their family together as they cope with the wife’s deteriorating mental and emotional state. The text strongly supports the idea that a mental illness drives her irrational behavior. However, mental illness is not the only factor behind her actions--it is not even the primary cause. She has suppressed her own sexuality and denied her attraction to woman, creating an environment that allows her mental illness and addiction to grow until they consume her.
We think that the form of the “Imaginary” mentioned in Lacan’s psychoanalytic theory of Mrs. Mallards family and friends “imagining” that the devastated new of Mr. Mallard’s death would cause her a heart attack, however later on in the story it was mentioned that she was in fact relieved to know she was a free woman of her marriage. Consequently, the reality of Mrs. Mallard’s thoughts, perceptions and feelings were not the same as others may have assumed or imagined to be. Based on stereotypical standards of society this was misunderstood because a wife should feel an enormous pain for the death of her husband. As the story continues, when Josephine whose Mrs. Mallard’s sister told her about the death of Mr. Mallard, instead of reacting in shock as “many women would’ve (Chopin, The Story of an Hour)” done so, Mrs. Mallard “wept at once, with sudden, wild abandonment, in her sister’s arms.
The family accepts them and invites her to the funeral. When she attends, she is embarrassed by her own weeping. She is homesick, and has been making attempts to belong for so long, and this reminds her of what she left behind. The funeral ended at the crematorium, a symbolic act of immolation. It’s possible that her unease at this part of the ceremony is related to the dislike which Westerners have about facing mortality, but it could also be that the reminder of the limitation of time made her shallow attempts at connecting with others seem ludicrous.
The final aspect of love in the novel is one of the importance and connection to family. The humiliation and contempt they all felt brought them closer together as they did not want to witness any of their suffering. Pearl’s reaction to her father’s death exemplifies the depth and strength of their connection. The narrator describes their final moments by saying “Pearl kissed his lips. A spell was broken.
In Kate Chopin’s “The Story of an Hour” demonstrates the personal growth of the dynamic protagonist Louise Mallard, after hearing news of her husband’s death. The third-person narrator telling the story uses deep insight into Mrs. Mallard’s thoughts and emotions as she sorts through her feelings after her sister informs her of her husband’s death. During a Character analysis of Louise Mallard, a reader will understand that the delicate Mrs. Mallard transforms her grief into excitement over her newly discovered freedom that leads to her death. As Mrs. Mallard sorts through her grief she realizes the importance of this freedom and the strength that she will be able to do it alone.
Mrs. Mallard’s actions cause the readers to contemplate a hidden meaning woven into the story line. Mr. Mallard is assumed to die in a railroad accident, leaving Mrs. Mallard devastated. Instead of feeling sadness or grief, Mrs. Mallard actually feels free. "There would be no one to live for her during those coming years; she would live for herself. There would be no powerful will bending hers in that blind persistence with which men and women believe they have a right to impose a private will upon a fellow-creature" (Page 499).
Hour of Freedom “The Story of an Hour” is a short story written by Kate Chopin. It details a wife named Mrs. Louise Mallard, who struggles with a heart condition. After learning of her husband, Brentley Mallard’s death in a railroad accident, Mrs. Mallard deals with grief in many stages. Chopin incorporates many literary devices throughout “The Story of an Hour,” but imagery is the most evident.