“The Story of an Hour”: question answers : Reason behind the death of Mrs. Mallard


The reasons of Mrs. Mallard’s death : The Story of an Hour

Question: What according to you led to Mrs Mallard’s death? Give reason to support your answer. 

Answer : ‘The Story of an Hour’ is a series of emotion that transformed a woman from Mrs. Mallard MTO Louise and then again Mrs. Mallard in just an hour. 

    The protagonist Mrs. Mallard was confined in a repressive marriage with Brently Mallard. Mrs. Mallard, who was unaware of her own repression, was described by the author as a woman  with calm face ” whose lines bespoke repression and even a certain strength. ” 

      Chopin suggest that Mrs. Mallard forced herself to submit to the will of her husband because society expected her such behaviour.

   Mrs. Mallard was suffering from heart disease, it was assumed that the news of her husband’s death could harm her but she bore it easily.

    ” She wept at once, with sudden, wild abandonment, in her sister’s arm.” 

    But surprisingly, not for a moment she wanted him back.
       When she was alone in her room resting in an armchair, she realised something was coming to her. Then she recognised it as the most precious thing which she always yearned for – freedom. At first she was striving to beat it back with her weak and powerless will, “when she abandoned herself a little whispered word escaped her slightly parted lips. She said it over and over under her breath :” free, free, free !” 

 She began to feel relaxed and happy and more vital then ever. She felt free and released from the clutches of repressive marriage .

    Her new found freedom is brought on by an influx of emotion that added the meaning and value to her life. Although, Mrs. Mallard initially felt fear when she heard the news of her husband’s death but the strength of the emotion was so powerful that she began to feel joy. The was the “joy that kills” ultimately leads to her death.

      The news of her husband’s death made her entirely new person – Louise. Her new found freedom brought her new confidence and new identity. She was now removed from the repressed life and she has got her self determination.

      Louise imagined her life without her husband, she enjoys vision of her future.
” Spring days and summer days and all sort of days that would be her own.” 
     She realised that whether or not she had loved him was less important than “this possession of self assertion” she now feels.

     She was overwhelmed by the idea that “she would live for herself”. 
     This possession of self assertion was so strong a force, that when she finds her husband alive, she immediately collapsed.

     The doctors and Brently Mallard, Richards, Josephine believed that it was Louise’s weak heart that could not bear the joy of seeing her husband alive.

    The reader can easily find the irony of ” the joy that kills”. It was the unpleasant shock that she got when she saw her husband alive , that killed her. She could not bear the sorrow that she would have to give up her new found freedom and return to the slavery of married life where she would be controlled by her husband. 

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