The Storm Questions and Answers
by Kate Chopin

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In "The Storm" by Kate Chopin, in what sense does the storm act as a character in the story?

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The storm functions as an excuse for husbands and wives to be separated. The storm also can be considered symbolic of pent-up desire and the natural power of Calixta’s long suppressed yearning for freedom. When the storm comes, it is as if the usual rules Calixta lives by are suspended. While her chance meeting with her former lover may seem like a betrayal, the story instead suggests that Calixta’s submission to her desire for Alcee is, in fact, a natural expression of her “birthright,” as Chopin calls it, without “guile or trickery.” The storm, for all its violence, makes it possible for Calixta to realize that her marriage is not an absolute boundary for her life: there are people and experiences outside of her marriage that can make her happy.

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The storm seems almost like another character in the story because it is so pivotal to the plot. It is what keeps Calixta's husband and son away from their home, stuck in town, leaving her at home alone. It is what forces Alcee to...

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