Irony in Story of an Hour
The short story by Kate Chopin “The Story of an Hour, ” was first in publication in the year 1894. The Story by then was referred to as “The Dream of an Hour” and it was after reprinting that it became to what we know today. Adding an event or circumstance that was not expected by readers can greatly modify a story and make it one of the best. Such situations induce the use of irony. The story is based on several styles of literature. Symbolism and irony are the major styles used by the Author. Nonetheless, the use of irony in the “Story of an Hour” has been used immensely and more than just once.
In the short story by Kate Chopin, three major forms of irony have been used. The three types of Irony are situational irony, verbal and dramatic irony. Dramatic irony is used and shows itself when readers know most events in a story than other characters do. On the other hand, situational irony is used when a complete opposite of events happen contrary to expectations of readers. The irony is perfectly used by Kate Chopin in her Story by captivating reader’s attention and curiosity. An example of verbal irony is seen when readers are informed of the character Louise who was sitting in an armchair looking out of the window and alone. Verbal irony has depicted the sense that there was no physical object approaching her. In actual sense, Louise was not physically fighting back. The verbal irony was also meant to portray the internal battle on her own feelings in regards to her husband’s death.
Situational irony as noted earlier is based on the idea that circumstances do not end up as they are expected. From the story, Mrs. Mallard’s sister is worried that she is herself sick while she is actually happy. The reasons to her happiness are focused on the mere fact that she is free from unhappy and oppressive marriage. The act of “Mrs. Mallard dies. Mrs. Mallard cries.” Is a form of situational irony as Richard goes around saying Mr. Mallard is dead once again. When readers get the real picture that Mr. Mallard is not dead are hit by irony. Nevertheless, Situational irony is when a person walks, and he was supposed to be dead. Chopin in her story used Richard and Mr. Mallard’s act of death to showcase the real picture. This mode of irony is used by the author once again to portray how Mrs. Mallard is happy rather than the fact that she is she should be sad.
Dramatic irony is derived from situational occurrences. It is worthy to note that, dramatic irony happens when readers /audience know in advance what information that other characters do not have the slightest of ide about. For instance, Mrs. Mallard died from the shock of seeing her husband when the audience/readers perfectly knew she dies from complete opposite; joy.
To conclude, “The Story of an Hour” by Kate Chopin is used to bring fourth the cruel and oppressive nature of marriage life. The marriage between Mr. and Mrs. Mallard in the particular period of writing the story was one of unhappiness. The need for joy in marriage was not something to talk about.
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