Kate Chopin's Short Stories

Questions for Kate Chopin's "The Story of an Hour"

4. What kind of relationships do the Mallards have? Is Brently Mallard unkind to Louise Mallard, or is there some other reason for her saying "free, free, free!" when she hears of his death? How does she feel about him?

5. Mrs. Mallard closes the door to her room so that her sister Josephine cannot get in, yet she leaves the window open. Why does Chopin make a point of telling the reader this? How might this relate to the idea of being "free" and to the implicit idea that she is somehow imprisoned? Do other words in the story relate to this idea?

6. What does Josephine represent in the story? What does Richards represent?

7. Mrs. Mallard is described as descending the stairs "like a goddess of Victory." In what ways does she feel herself victorious?

8. The last line of the story is this: "When the doctors came they said she had died of heart disease-of joy that kills." In what ways is this an ironic statement? What is gained by having the doctors make such a statement rather than putting it in the mouths of Josephine or Richards?

9. What view of marriage does the story present? The story was published in 1894; does it only represent attitudes toward marriage in the nineteenth century, or could it equally apply to attitudes about marriage today?

10. If this is, in some sense, a story about a symbolic journey, where does Mrs. Mallard "travel"?

Asked by
Last updated by Rushikesh N #764603
Answers 8
Add Yours

1) Mrs. Mallard knows that she will mourn her loving husband's death, but she also predicts many years of freedom, which she welcomes. She begins planning her future, in which she will live without the burden of other people. She loved her husband, more or less, but love is nothing to her when compared to independence, she decides, as she murmurs, "Free! Body and soul free!"


2) I've always felt she closed the door on Josephine and opened the window for herself to mean she wanted to enjoy those first, brief moments of solitude by herself. Also...... she wouldn't want anyone to see she wasn't devastated.

3) They're extended family, but they're also servants.

4) Mrs. Mallard is actually imagining the happiness of the years ahead. In fact, only the day before she had feared living a long life. Triumphantly, she answers the door and goes downstairs with her arm around Josephine's waist, where Richards awaits.


5) Everyone assumes she was so happy her husband was alive and well that she actually died of happiness.........

6) The Mallards were a part of society; they would necessarily have married for love, but she does say she loves her husband. This might mean like a brother, it might even mean like a father, but it certainly isn't a romantic love.

This could apply today. Many people get married for reason that don't include love, and others stay in marriages where the love has been lost. Often, people feel set free when those spouses are no longer with them........ in today's world this wouldn't be the norm because divorce is so prevalent. In the 1890's you rarely got divorced........ you dealt with the marriage.

10) I guess you could say she travels to what she sees as Heaven on Earth........ she's free...........

My dong my is ?



Too much info asker.






you're all so ungrateful. just answer the question and you'll be okay. Jill, please report them as abuse cuz they're ungrateful

(I'm shorting the answers)

4.) She feels free because she was trapped in a marriage

5.) Closes door open window to symbolize out with the old and in with the new( blocking off past to focus on future)

6.) Represent gender roles man is emotionless woman cares and aid(or they are just bystanders)

7.) Feels victorious as she is about to start a new life

8.) Ironic because she was about to start a new life yet dies(more sources of irony in the scene look)

9.) Marriages in this time were forced and plan but do not really reflect with now as people have more freedom and the ability to say no

10.) She could be traveling to Heaven for a new life to continue her journey