Symbolism In Kate Chopin's The Story Of An Hour

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Imagine being in a deep dark ocean, the only noise you hear is the rushing water around you. You open your mouth and let the water nearly suffocate you, only for a single ray of sunshine to reach you. You stare at the sunbeam and reach up towards it, the sun warming your deathly cold fingers. This is it. This is your beacon of hope. In The Story of an Hour, by Kate Chopin, she uses symbolism to explain that life can be so easily ripped from you when you least expect it and that life moves too fast. The story starts off with the main character, Mrs. Mallard, who has a serious heart disease, receiving the news of her husband’s death. She rushes up into her bedroom and shuts out her sister and her husband’s friend to grieve on her own. She walks over to an armchair by a giant window and stares out at the wide, open sky as she has an epiphany. She will never have to bend to anyone else’s will; she is free to make her own decisions. She soon learns, to her surprise, her husband never dies, and in the end, according to the doctor, “...she had died of heart disease--of the joy that kills.” Death is something no one, no creature, can run away from. No matter how many times you believe you have ‘cheated’ death in some way, you will inevitably die, both soul and body. When a person thinks of someone with a broken spirit, they usually think of a damned person, with their face pointing towards the ground. However, this is not always true. Some people, maybe most, tend to hide what they
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