The Story of an Hour Questions and Answers
by Kate Chopin

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What is the dramatic irony in "The Story of an Hour"?

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Dramatic irony is a stylistic device which occurs when the audience knows more about a situation than the characters do and is aware of certain facts that the characters are not. In Kate Chopin's celebrated short story "The Story of an Hour," Louise Mallard receives the news that her husband, Brently Mallard, has died in a tragic railroad accident. Initially, Louise experiences an emotional outburst and begins to sob. She then goes upstairs and locks herself in her room to process the unsettling situation. Inside her room, Louise Mallard does not mourn her husband's death but begins experiencing an overwhelming sense of joy and tranquility as she imagines the upcoming years without being under Brently's stifling rule.

While Louise is pleasantly mesmerized by the thought of being free from her husband's authority and society's oppressive expectations, Josephine is under the impression that her sister is making herself ill and begins violently knocking at her door. This is an example of...

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