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Main Post:?OST? brief summary of the article you chose above inthis forum. A summary does not contain any quotations from the article. It is simply a few sentences describing the contents of the article (What does the article say? What are its main points/ideas?).?Then, provide a brief analysis?What is the message? How does the author go about proving his or her argument? Was the article convincing to you- why or why not?)?his summary/analysis?hould be written entirely in?our own words.?e sure that the summary names the title and author of the article you’re discussing.The ArticlePrincipal Characters:Louise Mallard, the protagonist, a beautiful young womanBrentley Mallard, her husbandJosephine, Mrs. Mallard’s sisterMr. Richards, a newspaperman, Brentley Mallard’s close friendThe StoryBecause Louise Mallard suffers from a heart condition, her sister Josephine gently and carefully gives her the news of her husband’s death. Mr. Richards, a close friend of her husband, Brentley Mallard, and the first to learn of the tragic railroad accident that claimed Mallard’s life, has accompanied Josephine to help soften what they know will be a cruel blow.?ouise falls, sobbing, into her sister’s arms, then retreats upstairs to her room. Josephine, who begs Louise to let her in, would be shocked if she knew what thoughts were racing through her sister’s mind. Louise has loved her husband, who has in turn loved her and treated her kindly, but she is not crushed by his death, nor do her reflections make her sick.Indeed, although she initially hesitates to admit to herself that she is not distressed, she begins to repeat one word: “free.” Her life is her own again; no longer will she have to yield to her husband’s wishes. Only yesterday she had regarded life as tedious and feared longevity. Now she yearns for long life.Finally, she yields to her sister’s repeated pleas to unlock her bedroom door. Louise embraces her sister, and together they go downstairs to rejoin Richards. As they reach the bottom of the stairs, Brentley comes through the door, unaware of the accident that supposedly has claimed his life. Richards tries to move between him and his wife to shield her from the shock, but he is too late; she has already seen Brentley. She screams and falls down dead. The doctors who examine her afterward say that her weak heart could not bear the sudden joy.Themes and MeaningsLouise Mallard is Kate Chopin’s strongest example of the self-assertive woman ?so strong an example, in fact, that Richard Watson Gilder refused to publish the story in?he Century?ecause he regarded it as immoral.?ogue, which finally published it after the success of Chopin’s?ayou Folk?1894), had initially rejected it for the same reason.Mrs. Mallard certainly is a woman ahead of her time, for by the standards of the 1890’s she should be happy. Her husband loves her and treats her well; she herself acknowledges that he “had never looked save with love upon her.” Nor does she dislike Brentley.However loving Brentley is, though, nothing can compensate Louise for the freedom that she has lost by marrying. Her face “bespoke repression”; no matter how kind Brentley has been, he has still imposed his will on his wife. Hence, Brentley’s death is not tragic to her because it gives her own life back to her.She therefore emerges from her room “like a goddess of Victory,” with “a feverish triumph in her eyes.” She has won back her freedom. Though Chopin does not specify how Louise will use that liberty, in “Lilacs,” the next story she wrote, Mme Farival takes lovers, and Edna Pontellier in?he Awakening?1899) also seeks sexual gratification outside marriage. Perhaps Louise, too, who resembles these women in her self-reliance, will seek sensual fulfillment.Edna Pontellier also searches for her true vocation, which she believes is something other and more than mere wife and mother. Chopin regarded contemporary society as degrading to women, who were allotted limited roles in a male-dominated world. Just as the death of her husband sets Louise’s body free, so, too, does it free her spirit to find happiness in any way that she wishes.Her husband’s return shatters her hopes. She is again a mere wife, subservient. This sudden reversal, the destruction of her dreams, kills her. Still, she is spared the living death of a stifling relationship, and before she thought her husband was dead she had dreaded a long life. The story’s ending is therefore ironic but not tragic because Louise does escape marriage in the only way now open to her.Style and TechniqueNature imagery underlines the plot and meaning. Although authors typically associate death with autumn and winter, Brentley’s supposed death occurs in the spring. The trees are “all aquiver” with new life. Rain has fallen, purifying the air, and now the clouds are parting to show “patches of blue sky.” This scene mirrors Louise’s situation. The death of Brentley marks the end of the winter of her discontent; her soul can awake from its torpor. She can realize the full potential of her life, so she, like the trees, feels aquiver with life. The clouds again represent her married life, which cast shadows on her happiness, but now the horizon of her life is clearing. As she contemplates her future, she imagines “spring days and summer days” only, not autumn or winter days, because she links herself to the seasons of rebirth and ripening.In contrast to the world of nature is the cloistered, confining house, symbol of domesticity. In her own room she looks through an open window, another symbol of her freedom. The window does not intervene between her and nature and allows her the scope of infinite vision. She herself locks and unlocks the door to her room, admitting or excluding whomever she wants. She has what Virginia Woolf stressed as so important, a room of her own. However, it is only a temporary, and finally an inadequate, refuge. She leaves it, as she must, to rejoin her sister and Richards; in unlocking her door she paradoxically consigns herself to the prison of her house. Nowhere else in the house is there even a glimpse of nature, and, in contrast to the open window, the front door is locked; only Brentley has the key. He can come and go as he pleases, but she remains trapped within.Related to this contrast of nature and house is the imagery of up and down. Louise’s room is upstairs, and from there she looks at the tops of trees and hears the songs of birds on the roof. Her freedom is thus literally elevating. Her leaving this refuge and going down the stairs foreshadows her loss of freedom. She descends from the heaven of solitude to the hell of marriage again, where she encounters her husband. Now death is her only salvation. Instead of soaring freely like the birds, she can escape only by sinking still lower, into the grave.Essay by:?oseph RosenblumArts & HumanitiesEnglishENG 102

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