Characterization of Mrs. Mallard in The Story of an Hour
When asked if Chopin's characterization of Mrs. Mallard justifies the story's unexpected and ironic climax the answer is yes. Chopin gives us characterization of Louise Mallard and makes the story have a very interesting unexpected and ironic climax We are told a story about Mrs. Louise Mallard and how her husband has been killed in a train wreck. We learn about the emotions that Louise feels when she receives the news about her husband, first it is guilt soon it is happiness.
At the start of the story we discover, Mrs. Mallard experiences heart troubles and that her sister Josephine and her husband's Friend Richard have came to her house after hearing about a tragic train wreck that has left Mrs. Mallard's husband dead. They both fear that when they tell Louise the news of the wreck that killed her husband, Louise may become very sick. Richard and Josephine feel they need to deliver the news with great care and caution.
. At first we think that Louise is very upset over the news that her husband had been killed in a train wreck; however we are told that she realizes the freedom she might have if she is no longer tied down to her husband. Louise keeps repeating to herself free, free, free. The very first action we are told about that Louise performs describes as unusual by Chopin. It is really unusual for a woman to perform in this way after getting that kind of news. We are told. She did not hear the story as many women have heard the same, with a paralyzed inability to accept its significance. She wept at once, with sudden, wild abandonment. This emphasizes Louise's unique stance of how she grieves, making her later reaction less harsh. Most women would not react the way she did so we soon wonder is she really grieving or if this is happiness she feels.
Mrs. Mallard then enters her bedroom where there is an armchair that is facing a window, she then sinks right into the arm chair. Her dreams of freedom are symbolized by the descriptions Chopin gives us. Chopin explains that it is spring and goes on to how Louise feels. We are lead to believe that Louise's marriage had been a bit of constraint on her and the marriage wasn't anything she expected it to be. Mrs. Mallard was explained as being young, so was marriage really all the right for her? We are also told that when she was married she felt that life was going to be a long and hard life to bear. This tells us that she wasn't really all that happy to be married.
At the end Mrs. Mallard's husband Brently shows up to the house, never even being on the train that had wrecked. We soon learn that Mrs. Mallard passes due to her heart condition. The end of the story can be described as shocking, ironic and definitely unexpected. We all assume she dies a happy women but we know her feelings were quite different. I feel she died due to the stress of her husband showing back up at the house after she had been told he had died. Like I said in the beginning she was happy to know that she was free now and didn't have to care for anyone but herself. Chopin's description of Mrs. Mallard by far, justifies the stories unexpected and ironic climax. There are many clues throughout the whole story that can help you better understand exactly what Chopin is talking about.