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A Feminist Criticism Look at “the Story of an Hour”

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A Feminist Criticism look at “The Story of an Hour”

The “Story of an Hour” is about a character, Ms. Mallard, finding out that her husband is dead and what she is going to do next now that she has out lived her husband. Then she figure out that her husband is still alive but she ends up dying because of the “joy that kills” (Chopin) in the end. One assumption of the feminist criticism is that women don’t know what to do when they out live their husband, and that women need a man to provide for them. This is wrong in the sense that women are more strong and independent than ever. The feminist criticism is present throughout the story because it shows the relationships between the sexes and shows how different women are from each other. “The Story of an Hour” by Kate Chopin features a lot of the feminist criticism, in which it show the relationship between men and women and women and other women.

Feminist criticism applies to Ms. Mallard because at times she doesn’t think like other women do. Ms. Mallard doesn’t know what to do with her new life when she think her husband is dead. Most women do feel the same way. When Chopin says, “She did not hear the story as many women have heard the same, with a paralyzed inability to accept its significance,” (Chopin), this demonstrates that Ms. Mallard never wants to hear any bad news because she never thinks it’s real and will get emotional. This revelation is crucial because it shows that sometimes women can’t exactly think as straight as men do and they get emotional at times. Another quote that represent the feminist criticism is when Chopin says, “What could love, the unsolved mystery, count for in the face of this possession of self-assertion which she suddenly recognized as the strongest impulse of her being!” (Chopin). It demonstrates that love is a very powerful force but ones opinion of their self means a lot more. This revelation is crucial because it shows that women care more about what they look on the outside than men do. My quotes show the feminist criticism because it shows that men and women are very different in the way they think and act.

The feminist criticism is present throughout the story of “The Story of an Hour” because it shows the relationships between the sexes and shows how different women are from each other in like how they think and act. The quotes that I used in the essay described the character of Ms. Mallard in the feminist criticism in which it shows the way she acts when she finds out the news that her husband passed away only to figure out that he is still alive. Feminist criticism can help you better understand this short story in that you can understand why Ms. Mallard acts the way she does especially during the news of her husband’s death. It also helps you understand the mind of this woman through the eyes of another woman.

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