In “The Story of an Hour,” the author uses some figures of speech such as metaphor, simile, and paradox. What are their effects?

Kate Chopin's “The Story of an Hour” is filled with figurative language that enhances readers' enjoyment of the story and helps them better understand Mrs. Mallard's actions and emotions. The story ends with a paradox that operates on more than one level as readers understand it with greater depth than the characters do.

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Let's begin with a survey of some of the figurative language Kate Chopin uses to enhance her short story “The Story of an Hour.” Right away in the second paragraph, we read that Josephine tells Mrs. Mallard of her husband's death in “broken sentences” and with “veiled hints.” Mrs. Mallard responds with a “storm of grief.” These images are both metaphoric and vivid, and they enhance our experience of the story, helping us picture the scenes and words contained therein.

As the story continues, we read that Mrs. Mallard is “haunted” by “physical exhaustion,” as she sinks into her chair. The metaphor helps us imagine Mrs. Mallard's pale face and weak limbs as we envision exhaustion wrapping around her like a ghostly cloud. Mrs. Mallard sobs quietly “as a child who has cried itself to sleep continues to sob in its dreams.” This simile shows us that Mrs. Mallard is in a dream-like state, that she feels detached from the world around her.

As she sits, she feels something...

(The entire section contains 3 answers and 907 words.)

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