“The Story of An Hour” is one of the shortest, controversial, yet very encapsulating. The story depicts the events that happened within an hour from the time the main character, Mallard, received the news of her husband’s apparent death to the time he returned home. The title, story of an hour, is indeed a precursor of the story and reflects the writer’s literature design.
Practically, the title means the period of time in which the event in the story happened. It takes the reader approximately an hour to read the story. The reader is therefore synchronized with the actual events. Symbolically, it means the events that happened within an hour that led to the discovery of Mallard’s life. It could also mean that Mallard started living after receiving her husband’s death news and dies at the end of the hour. The writer selectively chose the title in order to condense the experience of the main character within a short time. This way, the reader would experience the intense feelings and emotions of the main character within such a short time. The title makes it possible for the reader to learn about Mallard’s whole life experience within the experience she underwent within the hour (Chopin web).
The articulate nature of the author in writing such a short story condenses a lot of experience in a short time frame hence cultivating reality in the story. It prompts the reader to ask many questions or make many conclusions depending on understanding. The design makes it possible to see different perspectives of the story. Some readers will see a practical real-life situation while others will imagine a deeper meaning, which goes beyond the one hour. Philosophers would even see the connection between the story and human interaction. This makes the story a fit for all readers.
Chopin, Kate. “The Story of an Hour.” 1894. English Department, Virginia Commonwealth University. Web 02, February 2012.