Analytical Speech On A Reading Of Our Choice:
The Story of an Hour by Kate Chopin
Attention gaining questions:
-What is Happiness in general?
-What is happiness in a marriage? Will there be different levels of happiness if the marriage is voluntary or arranged?
-What is Irony?
-Can the final piece of Irony in this story lead to Louise’s’ ultimate happiness? Why or Why not?
Summary of the story to read to the class:
"The Story of An Hour" is a short story told in the third person by Kate Chopin. The story was published in 1894, and it spans a one-hour span of time in the life of Mrs. Louise Mallard.
-Because Louise Mallard suffers from a heart condition, her sister Josephine gently gives the news of her husband’s death.
Mr. Richards was a close friend of her husband, Brentley Mallard, and the first to learn of the tragic railroad accident that claimed Brentley’s life, has accompanied Josephine as support.
-Louise Mallard falls, sobbing, into her sister’s arms, then retreats upstairs to her room.
-Josephine, who begs Louise to let her in, would be shocked if she knew what thoughts were racing through her sister’s mind. Louise is not devastated by her husband’s death, nor do her thoughts make her heart condition worse.
-Although she initially hesitates to admit to herself that she is not distressed, she begins to repeat the word: “free.” Her life is her own again; no longer will she have to be a slave to her husband’s wishes.
-Only yesterday she had regarded life as tedious and feared longevity. Now she yearns for long life.
-Finally, she gives in to her sister’s repeated pleas to unlock her bedroom door. Louise embraces her sister, and together they go downstairs to rejoin Mr. Richards.
-As they reach the bottom of the stairs, Brentley comes through the door, unaware of the accident that supposedly has claimed his life. Richards tries to move between him and his wife to shield her from the shock, but he is too late; she has already seen Brentley.