Irony is all around in everyday, daily, lives. Sometimes people don’t notice it, but if they would take a step back and really look, irony would be right there. In “The Story of an Hour” and “Richard Cory” irony takes place quite a bit.
The irony in “The Story of an Hour” is that Mrs. Mallard’s husband dies, and as soon as she hears of this news, she starts feeling relieved, free, and happy. In “Richard Cory”, the irony is that he was a very wealthy, good-looking man, who everybody envied, and yet he went home and committed suicide. These stories both have irony in them, in similar, and in very different ways.
In “The Story of an Hour,” Mrs. Louise Mallard is an elderly woman who has an ill heart. She has heart conditions, but yet her sister, Josephine, and her husband’s best friend, Richards, had to somehow break the news of her husband’s death to Louise. When thinking of anybody’s significant other passing away, people would be distraught and completely devastated at the thought.
However, Louise takes it surprisingly well. She goes up to her room, isolates herself in there, and “Free! Body and soul free! ” (Kate Chopin 1) are the words she started whispering repeatedly.This is very ironic because one wouldn’t think that she would be happy at the news of her husband dieing. Another example of irony in this piece of writing is towards the end, “When the doctors came they said she had died of heart disease—of the joy that kills” (Chopin 1).
This is another example of irony because when the word joy is said, it usually symbolizes glee, satisfaction, happiness, bliss, and pure delight. When it is used in the same sentence and saying that the joy was what killed Louise, it brings irony. Joy doesn’t usually kill, but in this case, it does.In “Richard Cory” there is a great deal of irony as well.
In this story, a man by the name of Richard Cory had it all, or so it seemed. Whenever anybody saw him walking down the street, they stopped and stared. He had everything; the looks, the money, the social skills, everybody liked him. “In fine, we thought he was everything, To make us wish that we were in his place” (Edwin Robinson 1).
Everybody envied him and wanted to be just like him since he was good at everything and anything. When he went home, that perfect man, with that perfect life, ended up putting a bullet through his head.The irony in this story is because when some person has everything anybody could ever possibly wish for, one would think that they are happy. He had everything and more, but why put a bullet through his head? It just goes to show that no matter how many material things one has, nobody will ever know what they are thinking inside and maybe their life isn’t as perfect as everybody makes it out to be.
There are many similarities in both of these pieces or work. One similarity between “The Story of an Hour” and “Richard Cory” is that there are examples of irony in both of them.Another thing that they both have in common is that both characters, Louise Mallard and Richard Cory, are wearing masks. Louise is wearing the mask that she was happily married, when in reality she was over-joyed when she found out her husband had passed.
Richard Cory is wearing the mask that he was happy with his life, having everything he could ever wish for, when in reality he wasn’t happy at all and ended up committing suicide. These two pieces of literary work also have differences. An example of a difference is that Louise Mallard died of a heart disease and Richard Cory felt that he had no other way out, but to take his own life.These two works of writing have many similarities and differences.
“Richard Cory” teaches the lesson that nobody should be judged by what they look like, how much money they have, or how perfect of a life it seems like they might have because on the inside, that person could be very distraught and depressed. “The Story of an Hour” teaches the lesson that even though somebody looks like they are happily married, they might be feeling held captive on the inside. They both have examples of irony and many differences as well. Louise Mallard and Richard Cory, may you two rest in peace.