BIK20703 LITERATURE FOR LANGUAGE PURPOSES – CRITICAL REVIEWS ON KATE CHOPIN’S SHORT STORIES


Hello, welcome to our video. So, today,in this video, we are going to talk about critical review on three short stories which are A Pair of Silk Stockings, The Storm and The Kiss. So please like the video and don’t forget to subscribe. The American novelist and short stories writer, Kate Chopin. Kate Chopin was born as Katherine O’Flaherty. She was born in St. Louis, Missouri Her parents, consist of her father, her mother and her siblings. Her father, Thomas O’Flaherty is An Irish Immigrant Her mother, Eliza Faris, was from a French Community. She grew up, fluent in English and French. Later on, Kate Chopin married to Oscar Chopin and six children with him. She was left with a huge debt when her husband died. Later on, she struggled with depression after the loses of her husband and her mother. Kate Chopin had written a lot of novels. The first novel was published in the year of 1890, which is at fall. Then, followed with the..her second novel, Young Dr. Gosse and Theo. But, the second novel failed to be published as she cannot find any publisher. And later one, the manuscript was destroyed. Followed by that, she continue to publish a lot of short stories and novels, until her death in 1904. Kate Chopin died on 22 August 1904. The doctor thought she would have a cerebral hemorrohage, as a cause of death. The summary for The Kiss short story starts with a girl named Nathalie, who has an affair with her brother’s friend,Mr Harvy. And at the same time, she is with a wealthy man, Mr. Brantain, who can be consider as insignificant and unobjective One day, Mr Brantain visits Nathalie at her house. And when Nathalie and Brantain are together, Mr Harvy comes into the room. Mr Brantain was sitting in the shadow, and not noticing Mr Brantain was there, he immediately kissed her. After that, Mr Brantain was upset and awkwaedly bid them farewell and leaves her place. She gets angry with Mr Harvy for kissing her in front of him. He apologises to her but she repels him and asks why he did not ring the bell. He gave answer that he arrived with her brother, who went upstairs while he tried to find Nathalie. And he again asks her to forgive him. After the day, looked out for Mr. Brantain who looked quite miserable but hopeful. She convinced him with a lie that the kiss was nothing but the fact that Mr Harvy’s being a close friend of her brother. He only considers her as a sibling. That’s why he did so. She mentioned her worry about what Mr Brantain must have thought about that encounter. And he delightedly accepts her apologies. On their wedding, Mr Harvy attends the ceremony and when he finds Nathalie, he tells her that her husband does not want to interrupt Mr. Harvey and Nathalie’s relationship. So, he gives permission to Mr Harvey to kiss the bride. She prepares for a kiss but Mr Harvey tells her that although he did not turn down Mr Brantain’s offer, he will not do that because he has decided to stop kissing woman, and considers it dangerous. At that moment, she realises that she cannot have everything in life. She gets wealth but loses romantic love of Mr Harvy. Another summary for the short story called The Storm. Started of,, with a young woman named Calixta who had a husband and a son named Bobinot and Bobi. Bobinot and Bibi were at the store, when dark clouds start to appear. Soon, the thunderous storm erupts and rain pours down. The storm is too heavy and they decided to stay at the store until the weather comes down. They are worried about their third member of their family, Calixta, who is home alone and probably afraid of the storm and nervous about their whereabouts. But still they cannot do anything because of their circumstances. Meanwhile, Calixta is at home and realised there is a storm ???? And she is indeed worried about her family. She goes outside to bring in the laundry before the storm soaks it all over again. Alcee, who was previously her ex-lover happened to be passing by her house with his horse. He helps Calixta to gather the laundry and asks if he can wait at her place for the storm to pass over. While trying to calm down Calixta, who is anxious about her husband and son in the storm, they eventually make love as the storm continues to rage on. The storm passes and Alcee leaves as he is riding away from Calixta’s home. Both are happy and smiling. Later, Bobinot and Bibi come home and drenched in mud. Calixta seems really glad to see them and the family enjoys a large supper together. Alcee the writes a letter to his wife, saying it’s okay for him if she wants to stay longer on her trip. Clarisse is touched when her reads the letter from her husband and kind of relieved because she could use a break from her husband and the romantic side of their relationship. So in the end, when the storm is over, everything has worked out pretty well for everybody The, the last summary for the short story that we have chosen is a pair of silk stockings where it tells about the character named Mrs Sommers who is a wife and a mother happens to receive a windfall of money. The windfall itself is 15 dolars. A sum equivalent to over 400 dolars in 2016, which is for her, a very great deal of money. Her family is very poor and she initially plans to buy her children new clothes with the money. But before she can buy the new clothing to her children, she comes upon a pair of silk stockings that she desires for herself. Instead of continuing with her errands and heading toward the bargain bins as she normally does, Mrs Sommers gets fitted for clothes, something that she had not done for some time. After getting clothes, she is hungry and treat herself to lunch at the nearby restaurant. Thinking she would only have a small meal, she ends out with several course meal including dessert, wine and coffee. After eating delicious meal, Mrs Sommers is feeling satisfied and contented more than she has in a very long time. A flyer of theater catches her eyes and she decides with the money she has left, she would take herself to a movie. She bought the ticket and she goes to the theater. Sitting among the elegantly dressed women and men, crowding the theater, where she also managed to share the chocolates with the fellow audience members. Every time she does something for herself, she becomes more comfortable with herself. After the show ends, she makes her way home on a cable car, wishing that it would never stop. The story ends with Mrs Sommers is sitting in the cable car, wishing it would never end, as she does not want to return home and back to reality of her life. So I am going to talk about general themes for those three short stories that we have been covered. They are A Pair of Silk Stockings, The Kiss and The Storm. Every short story contains their own themes to stand or present the message they are going to deliver to the readers. For the short stories that we have been observed, we could find two general themes from them. The first is the theme of people who are tempted by the material gain. The characters in these stories show the greediness in their inner selves, taking the situation for granted just for gaining the wealth or material they desire. For example, in short story entitled The Kiss, although Brantain loves Nathalie with no condition, Nathalie marries to Brantain just only for a desire to live in a comfortable life. As a proof that she does not love Brantain, she has affair with Harvy without Brantain knows the relationship. There is another example in short story, A Pair of Silk Stockings. In this story, Mrs Stommers’s personality changes after she bought a pair of silk stockings. She becomes greedy to buy anything else after she looks at the parcel she received. The parcel that she has received is small, old and shabby shopping bag. So, she becomes out of control to buy anything else that include her outfit, to change the new outfit just to make herself looks better. Because of her desire to make herself looks better, she forgets her responsibilities to control the budget to support her family. While in short story, The Storm, Calixta falls into the seduction of her ex-lover and eventually has sex with him, even though she at first avoids it. She feels she managed to fulfill her sexual desire when she is with Alcee, even though she is actually very happy with her family. So the next theme is, we can see that during the short stories were written, it was an era where the women really rely on men for financially or sexually desires. In those three short stories, they presented us that the women characters are all considering men as the pillar of their life. They are depending their life to the men to support them or to supply their needs or desire they want, maybe like sexual desire, the money or also for their life support. In A Pair of Silk Stockings, Mrs Stommers is not a rich woman ever since she becomes a single mother to her children. Without her husband or man in her household, she struggles to live.. and support the household financial. For The Kiss short story, the best example that can be represented is when Nathalie marries to Brantain not because she loves him, but she has another intention which is for making sure she would collect for assets and also to increase the wealth that she already has. So, meanwhile, in the third short story, The Storm, Calixta feels worried when her husband has not come home yet. Even she is worrying about her husband, she traps herself into an affair with her ex-lover. But still, treats her husband well after the incident happened. From this scene, Chopin proves that women really rely on men for most of the things as even Calixta does not get the sexual desire from her own husband. But she gets the sexual needs from Alcee, even though she is married to Bobinot. Assalamualaikum, my name is Sayyidatul Eizzah binti Ad Zamakhshari, with matric number, 050596 As for today, I will be presenting the simiilarities in The Storm, The Kiss and A Pair of Silk Stockings written by Kate Chopin. So, there are few similarities in theme from all these short stories which are, woman and feminism and freedom. For the theme woman and feminisim, in the short story The Storm, there are two women in the short story which are Calixta and Clarisse who play the roles as the caretaker of the house and the also dutiful wives to their husband. Calixta is the wife of Bobinot while Clarisse is the wife of Alcee. This short story portrays woman as a dutiful and a responsible wife, as Calixta is worried and anxious about her husband and her son who will be in the storm. She is also busy sewing Bobinot’s clothes while her husband and her son are at the store. But at the end of the story, both seek fulfillment away by feeling free, being away by her away husband, which shows Clarisse is happy staying at Biloxi with her babies and without her husband. While one is being happy by fulfilling her sensual desire by sleeping with Alcee, when her husband is away from the house. For the theme women and feminism in The Kiss, it focuses more on women who need to choose between passion and money. Women need to be married to a wealthy man to be accepted in the society. This can be seen when Nathalie is marrying Brantain out of love to live comfortably as Brantain is a wealthy man, even she would prefer to be with Harvy. In the end, she has accepted that she cannot have both. Next, in the short story of A Pair of Silk Stockings, it portrays Mrs Sommers as a poor woman that needs to take care of her children and be a responsible mother. This can be seen when she.. even though receives unexpecterd 15 dollars, she immediately thought on how she could use the money for her family. But in the end, she explores the pleasure and enjoyment in taking care of herself by buying things for herself. The theme freedom from the short story The Storm can be seen from the line ‘the first free breath since her marriage’. This shows that Clarisse who is finally free from her husband while being at Biloxi with her baby. As a married person, also can feel trapped during the marriage. Therefore, by being away from her husband, Clarisse can finally be free from being a dutiful wife. Next, the theme freedom from The Storm is shown when a woman is free to choose between passion or love. So, Nathalie is marrying Brantain without love to provide her with the financial secured But in the end, she finally chose money to live a comfortable life. For the theme of freedom in A Pair of Silk Stockings, it portrays a woman is finally freed from the job of feeding and taking care of her family. Instead of buying things for her family, Mrs Sommers buys things for her from the unexpected 15 dollars. So, this short story shows that woman also need to feel the freedom and enjoyment of rewarding herself for being a responsible mother. Assalamualaikum w.b.t, my name is Noor Azzahrah Hanani binti Noor Asmadi with the matric number 049614 and I’ll be explaining on the differences of the themes in A Pair of Silk Stockings, The Kiss and The Storm. Although the main themes of these three short stories which are A Pair of Silk Stockings, The Kiss and The Storm are about women and freedom, there are slightly differences in the term of main focus of the theme that can be identified in these three short stories. In A Pair of Silk Stockings, the theme which is repression and the need for self-assertion is emphasised in this story. This can be seen when Mrs Sommers thought right after she comes into the small fortune of 15 dollars. At that moment, she feel dejected as she needs to worry about her children first instead of caring and thinking about herself. However, when after she starts to buy herself silk stockings, a pair of gloves, pretty shoes, two magazines, the meal at an expensive restaurant and a ticket to a play, she feels satisfied and happy about it. In other words, she really enjoys herself after spending and buying those things for herself without having any worries. For The Kiss, the author, Chopin pointed out a theme which is passion wealth cannot be pursued in one time. In the short story where the protagonist, Nathalie is planning a conspiracy by marrying the kind, unattractive and half-witted guy, Brantain, while continuing an affair with Mr Harvy. She does not have any strong feeling about Brantain but only aiming for his wealth and money. However, her carefully arranged plan is ruined because of Mr Harvy’s action as he came into her house without ringing the bell and kissed Nathalie in front of Brantain. This incident has started an opportunity on her to carry on her affair in front of Brantain as he forgives her after the incident happened. However, after Nathalie’s marriage, Mr Hrvy decided to pull out himself from the affair and that makes Nathalie acknowledges her defeat as she failed to make Mr Harvy as a pawn for her ambitious dream. This shows why a woman sometimes cannot expect to have both passion and wealth at the same time because it might go wrong. As for the third short story which is The Storm, the theme that can be identified in this story is the role of human’s nature and morality In this short story, Calixta, a housewife. who is waiting for her husband, Bobinot and her child, Bibi at the house as the thunderous storm erupts and rain pours down. While she is gathering the laundry, Alcee, who passes by with his horse, comes and helps Calixta with it. He asks whether he can stay at her house. waiting for the storm to stop. It is later revealed that Alcee is Calixta’s former lover and they eventually falling into the yield of lust and make love while waiting for the storm to pass over. From the scene, we can see that it seems like Chopin is condoning the effect of these two characters, be it as she is trying to say that the women can have the sexual freedom and emphasizing that it is in human nature to have or experience some sexual encounters. To conclude, there are many themes that had been obtained by the research that had been carried out. Kate Chopin was influenced by her lifestyles of an Irish and French ancestry and the life in Cajun and Creole cultures after she had married her husband and moves to Lousiana. Hence, many of her stories were about her life in Lousiana. Kate Chopin’s depiction of her women characters were unusual as they were seen as an individual with desires and needs. Kate Chopin is someone who took women seriously. She never doubted women’s ability to be strong.

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