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The Tale of Two Stories of Oppression

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The Tale of two stories of oppression

English 125 Introduction to Literacy

Cory King

October 29, 2012

Every marriage has it's ups and downs, many know for a fact that no marriage is guarantee 100% perfect. In both stories " The Life of Walter Mitty by James Thurber and " The Story of an Hour" by Kate Chopin both characters use dreams to explore freedom and both sets of dreams are only temporary before reality comes crushing down on them. These two pieces have the same theme about love and marriage, sadness and heartache of wanting more. Both characters in these stories feel oppressed in some way. In the life of Walter Mitty he feels like he has to hide in delusions or fantasies to feel important. Mrs. Mallard in the story of an hour wants more than anything to be free to live her own life. This paper will compare and contrast both of these literary works together to compare how alike and different each story is. This paper will have details about each story so you can get a better understanding and some examples from some of my sources to support my statements.

One of the aspects of " The Story of an Hour" that is compelling -both fascinating and repellent . The fact that Mrs. Mallard feels excitement after learning that her husband has been killed in an accident. Mrs. Mallard anticipates the possibility of finally being able to live for herself, rather than for or in a relationship with her husband. Rather than condemning Mrs. Mallard for such an emotion, we as readers can empathize with her. In the " Secret Life of Walter Mitty the readers and empathize with this character also. Walter feels excitement while he is in his fantasies. When Walters dreams are over Walter starts to feel down and kind of depressed with what his life is like. Walter craves the excitement that he sees in his fantasies. Although Mrs. Mallards husband did not appear to be abusive, we as readers intuitively, understand that Mrs. Mallard felt oppressed in her marriage, and now for the first time ever, she feels the possibility of constructing her own identity and identifying possibilities for her own future.

In the story of an hour the setting of the story takes place in the late 1800's. Mrs. Mallards and her husband are middle class people that live in the United States. The story revolves around Mrs. Mallard in her room. The story is written in this way because we only get to know the thoughts and feelings of Mrs. Mallard. The heart trouble that affects Louise Mallard is both physically and symbolic representation of her feelings towards her marriage and unhappiness with her lack of freedom. The fact that Mrs. Mallard has heart trouble is the first thing we learn about, and this heart trouble is what seems to make the announcement of Brently's death so threatening. A person with a weak heart like Louise would not take this news to well. When she thinks about her independence her heart starts to race. When she dies at the end of the story the doctor's diagnosis her with heart disease which seems appropriate because the shock that she felt when she saw her husband was shock of joy, but the doctor's did not know it was the shock of her new found independence that was just ripped away from her that was to much for her to handle." The open window that Mrs. Mallard looks out of seems symbolic. The author use the window as a symbol of the freedom she felt. From the window she see blue sky, fluffy clouds, and treetops. She hears people and birds singing, this feeling makes her see life in a new way." The open window helps provide her with a new bright future that is not pushed aside by the demands of another person.

In the story of an hour Mrs. Mallard feels guilt of joy. Mrs. Mallard is feeling a forbidden pleasure that she can only do in private. When Louise learns from her sister Josephine and Richard of her husbands Brently's death, she reacts with grief that any person would react with. Alone she realize that she is an independent woman again and this starts to excite her. Mrs. Mallard tries to fight off the joy that she feels by beating it back with all of her will. She then realize that she could no longer fight off this pleasure that she feeling. When she finally does acknowledge the joy, she feels possessed by it as the word "free" escapes her lips. Louise Mallard life offer no acceptance for this kind of joy and she knows that people would not understand it. he death of her husband even under the worst circumstances have given her the taste of this forbidden pleasure, and her new found independence being a single woman again. With her husband unexpected arrival Mrs. Mallard felt her independence yanked away from her. Louise felt the happiness she once longed for slipping away and so did her life. She rather die than spend another day unhappy with him.

In the story "The story of an hour represents a distilled example of feminist awakening and self assertions, and the most essential part is the ending of the novel: Mrs. Mallard seems to die in tragedy, but it can be regarded as a triumph, Chopin grants her a death in which her craving for freedom are finally fulfilled through her sudden joyful death ( Wam, Xuemei 2009). Wam interpretation of this story fits the theme. Mrs. Mallard found her freedom only through death. An author from the University of Illinois Press Lawrence Berkove "states that this self- assertion of intelligent through masked as illumination. As a result, a pattern of basic contradictions

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