The Story of an Hour by Kate Chopin

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In two paragraphs, apply the principles of Psychoanalytic or Freudian criticism to "The Story of an Hour" (20 sentences all together).

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In Freudian theory, the human psyche is divided into three parts: the id, the ego, and the superego. The id is the home of our primitive, unbridled desires—the place where our sexual drives lurk, waiting to burst out. The superego is our strict moral conscience, the part of us that puts duty ahead of pleasure. The ego is the part of ourselves that manages the two poles of the unbridled id and the repressive superego, finding the proper balance between them.

A Freudian analysis of "The Story of an Hour" could argue that Mrs. Mallard goes too quickly from being a person rigidly controlled by her super-ego to a person who has set free the floodgates of her id. According to Freud, the desires of our id are usually firmly repressed. We are unaware of them because our superegos have so firmly taken hold of our conscious minds.

We can see, however, the id taking over in the following passage as Mrs. Mallard suddenly realizes she is free:

There was something coming to her and she was waiting...

(The entire section contains 625 words.)

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