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Joy that Kills -The Story of an Hour

            How would you react to discovering that your beloved was killed? One moment you're a wife and the next, a widow; all alone. In "The Story of an Hour" we have a character named Louise that suffers from heart conditions, and receives news from her sister Josephine that her husband was killed in a train accident. Louise discovers all the new possibilities that await for her now that she has all this freedom. Three major points that I will focus on will be how Louise handles the news of her husband's death, why does Louise find comfort in her husband's death, and the irony that comes into play at the end of the story.
             How does Louise handle the news of her husband's death? "Josephine who told her, in broken sentences; veiled hints that revealed in half concealing." (Chopin) Josephine is only telling her sister fragments of the truth of her husband's death, because she doesn't want to overwhelm her with the heart condition she has. "The people closest to her have gone to great lengths to cushion the blow of her husband's death; however, we are not given any details as to the relationship they had in the past or any relevant information. By doing this, the author allowed the reader to form his/her own false interpretation of how this women is going to react" (Woodlief) By Chopin writing this way we can't judge Louise's actions towards the news of her husband's death. "She wept at once."(Chopin) Louise accepted the news wholeheartedly; she didn't deny the truth. Once she recovered from crying ".she went away to her room alone. She would have no one follow her." (Chopin) finally coming to terms that she is alone now and that she has lost her companion.
             Why does Louise find comfort in her husband's death? "The tops of the trees that were all aquiver with the new spring life. The delicious breath of the rain was in the air." (Chopin) "The language here foreshadows the ironic happiness that she feels at being set free.

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