Comparison and Contrast: A Rose for Emily by William Faulkner and the Story of an Hour by Kate Chopin Essay

The comparison and contrast of A Rose for Emily by William Faulkner and The Story of an Hour by Kate Chopin will give information about the stories and their backgrounds. A Rose for Emily by Faulkner is based in the post-civil war about the Grierson family. When Emily Grierson’s father dies she is left alone and unmarried only with her servant Tobe. She meets Homer Barron and after he enters her home he is never seen again.

The Story of an Hour by Chopin is based in industrial times and Louise Mallard finds out that her husband had been killed in a railroad accident.

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Josephine her sister tried to tell her gently not to upset for she had heart trouble. Her husband believed to be dead had come home but in all the grief of seeing him she killed herself from shock of seeing him. Mallard and Grierson are similar characters in many ways. Grierson character is insane and obsessive and does not know how to let go.

In the story it says “she told them that her father was not died. She did this for three days” (Faulkner 86). Mallard on the other hand is apprehensive and demented as well. When she was told that her husband died she did not know what to do and died from being over joyed to see him alive. In the story it says “It was Brently Mallard who entered, a little travel stained…….. They said she die of heart disease of joy that kills. ” (Chopin 16) The settings in the stories are from different time periods.

A Rose for Emily is set in post-civil war era. The setting of the story reflects the time by how it shows Grierson family being the richest family in town to them being humanized and their once prized house surrounded by cotton gins and gasoline pumps. (Faulkner 84) The Story of an Hour setting is in the 1960’s. Were most women in that time period stayed and at home, took care of the house while their husbands worked. “When intelligence of the railroad disaster was received, with Brently Mallard name leading the list of killed” (Chopin 15).

The definition of repression in a Psychoanalysis text is the rejection from consciousness of painful or disagreeable ideas, memories, feelings, or impulses. Both women in some way show different ways of repression in their different situations. Grierson shows repression by rejecting that her father is dead. Also she rejects the thought of losing Homer Barron just as she lost her father. Mallard rejects the impulse that she is a free woman but does not know how to handle things when she finds out that her husband is still alive.

Both women show repression whether it is through insanity or in joy. The comparison and contrast of these two stories have similar themes but Grierson’s insanity was not like Mallard apprehension. Grierson was not able to part with others while Mallard was ready to part with her husband and be a free woman. These two women have the same moral to their stories with one exception. Grierson kills the man she loves so she does not lose him. While Mallard is joy to be rid of her husband and be a free woman.

References

Meyer, Michael. The compact Bedford Introduction to Literature. 9th ed. Boston: Bedford, 2012. Print. Faulkner, William. A Rose for Emily.

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