Categories
Short Story Sunday

The Story of an Hour: An Hour of A Woman’s Freedom

Freedom is being told, as a woman, that your husband is dead. You may have a fragile heart that any bad news could risk your health, but these bad news turn into good news. The power of given the chance at freedom is noticing the delicious breath of rain in the air. Or the patches of blue skies as the coursing blood relaxes every inch of your body. But then in an instant, the moment of freedom is taken away when your husband walks into that door, shattering your dreams.

The short story of The Story of An Hour, tells that story of a woman being told that her husband is dead and by a twist, her husband comes walking in the door very much alive. Written by feminist fiction writer, Kate Chopin writes this 10-minute read about the joy of being independent in an oppressive marriage.

Read It For Free Here:

Before You Read This Short Story Keep These Two Questions In Mind:

How happy is the protagonist in her marriage?

From what does she actually die from in the end?

Synopsis

As stated in the beginning of the story, knowing that Mrs. Mallard has a sensitive heart, she is treated with care. Her sister kindly tells her about her husband’s death.

In the short story, it is said that her husband does care for her, but is it enough? When she is given these news she was shocked and disappointed. She wept with “wild abandonment,” and when the storm of grief had spent it’s time, she is left alone.

When Mrs. Mallard is left alone, she looks out the window and looks at the sky, smells the air, and starts to appreciate Mother Nature. This look onto the view of her window represents the look out to the opportunity and hope. Looking out the window symbolizes hope, and in this context, as a woman during this time period, Mrs. Millard starts to notice that hope of being free.

Mrs. Millard recognizes the freedom and whispers, “free, free, free!” She would live for her herself and even though she loved her husband, sometimes, love became an unsolved mystery. Mrs. Millard recognized freedom as the self as the strongest impulse of her being.

Until, shortly after Mrs. Mallard went down the stairs along with her sister, Brently Mallard was entering catting his grip-sack and umbrella. He was far away from the scene of the accident, and didn’t even know there was one.

Then, Mrs. Mallard died at the sight of her husband at the door. An hour of freedom, shattered, and killing her at her chance of freedom. Almost as if Mrs. Mallard died at the dream of freedom being taken away from her.

When the doctors came they said she had died of heart disease–of the joy that kills.  

The Joy That Kills

When the doctors said that she died of the joy that kills, what do you think that means?

The joy that kills could be the feminism movement. At the time that this was written, the feminist movement was a radical idea of giving women the rights as a man. It’s the idea of feminism that kills all the joy within that idea given that many men didn’t see the importance of giving women rights.

Mothers Day

Although the character in this short story isn’t a mother, I believe it’s important to talk about the dominance of men in relation to gender roles. In this short story, Mrs. Mallard is restrained for her independece and when she’s given it, she’s happy and starts to see the great things in life.

This mothers day, it’s important to talk about the ideas of feminism and how mothers are a product of this idea. If no mother is given the same rights as the father, then action must be taken. Mothers should never be stripped away from their chance at happiness.

Happy mothers day to all the mothers in the world. Another great Mothers Day short story is The Aged Mother, a Japanese folktale about an aged mother, saved by her son in a dystopian world where all old folks are ordered to be murdered.

Categories
Short Story Sunday

Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?: Sunday Short Story Review

Author: Joyce Carol Oates
Release Date: 1966
Genres: General Fiction, Thriller
Themes: Loss of Innocence, Feminism, Sexuality, Violence
Word Count: 7000 words, 9 pages

Read It Here

Synopsis

This twisted short story follows 15 year old white girl, Connie. Connie believes she’s pretty, is confident in the way she dresses and walks, and like any other fifteen year old, in midst of an adolescent rebellion. Three pages in, after a morning of laying in the sun, there’s a man, or a figure, or a spirit, outside trying to lure her. Connie has to make the decision to follow or to risk it all. In this 9 page short story, Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been? is direct in telling a story and indirect in interpreting it.

Spoilers Without Context





Quotes

Connie couldn’t do a thing, her mind was all filled with trashy daydreams.

But all the boys fell back and dissolved into a single face that was not even a face but an idea, a feeling, mixed up with the urgent insistent pounding of the music and the humid night of July

Follow the next page for a spoiler, in-depth review.

Categories
Short Story Sunday

Short Story Sunday: “Sweat” by Zora Neale Hurston

It’s Black History month and as Latino and an American citizen, I believe it’s important that we embrace the work that African Americans bring to us and that includes this short story: Sweat.

The short story focuses on Delia, a wash-woman for White people, and her abusive husband Skyes. Delia is a hard working woman as she works hard for her household. She says, “Sweat, sweat, sweat! Work and sweat, cry and sweat, pray and sweat!” That all she does as she’s unappreciated by her husband who scares her with a wip, making Delia believe its a snake (something she’s highly fearful of), while she’s busy cleaning clothes. He mocks her, he makes fun of her, and is unfaithful to her. Yep, Skyes is a cheater.

The rest of the story talks about how nobody in the town like Skyes, how Skyes is always with his mistress Bertha and the whole plot goes down hill when Skyes brings in a rattlesnake into the house. Delia begs for Skyes to take it away and he responds with, “he’s gointer stay right heah tell he die. He wouldn’t bite me cause Ah knows how tuh handle ‘im. Nohow he wouldn’t risk breakin’ out his fangs ‘gin yo’ skinny laigs.” Until later in the story, the snake bites him in the neck and he’s crying for help, and Delia is outside minding her own business, waiting for him to die. Congrats Skyes! You played yourself. The end.

What I love about this story is how Zora Neale Hurston, uses African American dialect to tell a story. Hurston has the ability to show characterization through dialogue rather than narration. In the story, I was able to understand the type of woman Delia is by the way she stood up to her husband. I was able to understand the ignorance in Skyes voice when he talked to Delia.

This is a piece of work that must go unnoticed as Hurston is unapologetically herself and uses African American dialect to tell a story rather than “writing like a white woman.”

This short story talks about the perseverance of the black woman, biting the thorns that men give to her, and stand up on their own. Delia is a woman who sweats all day during work, beats to the drum of her own drum, who got the courage to her end her marriage, and let her husband die because he deserved it.

Favorite Quotes:

“Naw you won’t,” she panted, “that ole snaggle-toothed black woman you runnin’ with aint comin’ heah to pile up on mah sweat and blood. You aint paid for nothin’ on this place, and Ah’m gointer stay right heah till Ah’m toted out foot foremost.”

“He’s full uh frogs so he caint hardly move, thass how. Ah eased up on ‘m. But Ah’m a snake charmer an’ knows how tuh handle ’em. Shux, dat aint nothin’. Ah could ketch one eve’y day if Ah so wanted tuh

A surge of pity too strong to support bore her away from that eye that must, could not, fail to see the tubs. 

Read this 20 Minute short story here:

What are your favorite parts from this short story? Let’s start a conversation down below in the comments section!

Categories
Short Story Sunday

The Aged Mother: A Folktale of Wisdom

Where to Access this Short Story:

What is vulnerability? Google defines it as the quality or state of being exposed to the possibility of being attacked or harmed, either physically or emotionally. I define it as the governor of Shining.

Categories
Short Story Sunday

“The Yellow Wallpaper,” by Charlotte Perkins Gilman: How an Environment Invades the Mind

Let’s create a scenario inside your head. All you gotta do is respond to these questions inside your head.

Does your room have a wallpaper?

If YesIf No
Do you love that wallpaper? What would the perfect design of that wallpaper be?
If you answered yes: Lucky you! Not everybody has that luxury. Now move onto reading the rest of this table because these senarios are enough to spook the mind.

If answered no: Why don’t you love that wallpaper? Is it the patterns? Is it the colors? Have you done anything to get rid of it?
Now what if that idea of the perfect wallpaper wasn’t given to. What would you do?

What if you have to live in a room where you have the most ugliest wallpaper you’ve ever seen?

Now imagine living in 1892, as a white woman, diagnosed with temporary nervous depression, and having to be treated for a mental illness in a room with a bed nailed to the floor, a scratched floor, and this wallpaper in your

I don’t know about you, but this wallpaper is so ugly and terrifying that it would probably cause many nightmares. To me, this wallpaper looks terrifying because it’s damaged to the point that it tells a story. A story that I don’t want to know where those damages come from.

This short story tackles that idea.

Categories
Short Story Sunday

Short Story Sunday Review, “A Good Man is Hard to Find,” by Flannery O’Connor