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“The Storm” by Kate Chopin, Essay Example

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Kate Chopin ended her story “The Storm” by referencing happiness to make an ironic comment on the nature of human love and human lust. Because the two marriages that are described in the story are both troubled in regard to sexual fulfillment and the threat of infidelity, Chopin’s concluding the story with the assertion that all the characters were happy is meant to haunt the reader rather than comfort them. the brewing storm that is described during the opening of the story and throughout the rising action is a symbol for the threats that underlie human relationships. Although the story is focused on erotic and marital relationships, Chopin’s theme that dangerous emotions, like dangerous storms, threaten the stability of human relationships could be extrapolated to refer to any and all relationships. The irony of Chopin’s happy-ending is made perfectly clear by Clarisse’s reaction to her husband’s letter: she realizes that she loves him but is happier not having to have  sexual relationship with him.

My impression of the unit readings is that each one refers to the potential hypocrisy of society. In Twain’s “The War Prayer” the reader is shown how the irony of patriotism and ignorance impacts the suffering of innocent people through the crime of war. By contrast,  Twain’s Rouging It illustrates the irony of the individual who struggles to live outside of social expectations or rules. In “The White Heron” Jewett expresses a kind of sadness for the way that society brings people out of harmony with nature and vice-verse. In  “The Revolt of Mother” Sarah Penn challenges the gender-limiting ideas that society places on men and women who are married. The motivations for the main characters of all of these stories is to reach a state of individual freedom and autonomy while simultaneously navigating the rules and expectations of society. Throughout the unit-readings, I enjoyed the humor that was included in many of the selected works. I also enjoyed what i felt was a sense of respecting and exalting freedom that was part of many of the selected readings. The only aspect of the unit-readings I disliked was the cynicism i saw reflected in “The War Prayer” and also in “The Storm.” The unit-readings were not difficult to understand, but I think that of all the selections,  “The Storm” took longest to absorb and appreciate.

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