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Concluding Paragraphs - CommNet

Critical readings of Chopin's works often note the tension between female characters and the society that surrounds them. Margaret Bauer suggests that Chopin is concerned with exploring the "dynamic interrelation between women and men, women and patriarchy, even women and women" (146). Often, critics focus on the importance of conflict in these works and the way in which Chopin uses gender constraints on two levels, to open an avenue for the discussion of feminine identity and, at the same time, to critique the patriarchal society that denies that identity. Kay Butler suggests that "entrapment, not freedom, is the source of Chopin's inspiration, for she is primarily concerned with exploring the way in which gender roles deny identity"; she continues: "yet without the entrapment, the question of identity, even the inspiration to write about identity, wouldn't exist" (18). Chopin's "The Story of an Hour" most poignantly balances the dual focus of her work, describing the incipient awakening of Mrs. Mallard, and thus exploring the possibility of feminine identity, even while, ultimately, denying the fruition of such an experience. Like all of her works, this short story reacts to a specific historical framework, the Cult of True Womanhood, in its indictment of patriarchal culture. As Barbara Welter notes, in the nineteenth century, "a women judged herself and was judged by her husband, her neighbors, and society" by the attributes of a True Woman which included, especially, "purity" and "domesticity" (372). The concept of purity, because it suggested that women must maintain their virtue, also, paradoxically, denied their status as emotional and affectionate beings. Similarly, the concept of domesticity, because it relegated women to the home, denied their intellectual and professional capabilities (Papke 12). "The Story of an Hour" describes the journey of Mrs. Mallard against the Cult of True Womanhood as she slowly becomes aware of her own desires and thus of a feminine self that has long been suppressed. While this journey begins with the news of her husband's death, Mr. Mallard's unexpected return at the very end of the tale tragically cuts short the journey towards feminine selfhood. Yet the tale is tragic from beginning to end, for the very attempt to create an identity against the gender constraints of patriarchal society is riddled with a sense that such an attempt can only end in defeat. "The Story of an Hour" demonstrates that the patriarchal society that defines gender roles which control and delimit women's experiences deny them a self founded on true feminine desires. Ultimately, Mrs. Mallard's journey towards selfhood only serves to reveal the erasure of identity, indeed of being, that women experienced in the nineteenth century. Through symbolically and ironically suggesting that gender definitions delimit the feminine self, the opening of "The Story of an Hour" hints of the tragedy that pervades the tale. Because of Mrs. Mallard's "heart trouble," her sister and her husband's friend rush to her side to break the news of her husband's death in a gentle manner (644). On a literal level, Louise Mallard's condition suggests that she has a congenital weakness that demands some care; Michelle Angeline suggests that this condition is "biologically fated" and thus that Chopin introduces the idea of biological determinism into the story (61). Yet, on a more complex level, Chopin is demonstrating the way in which society perceives women, and wives in particular, as weak creatures who need to be handled very carefully, almost like children. Ironically, on a deeper level, Chopin demonstrates symbolically the true nature of the problem: patriarchal definitions of the feminine role of wife denies, and thus causes trouble with, the heart, a favorite symbol of the emotions and of love. Ultimately, the fact that society fails to perceive the true nature of Louise Mallard's trouble, the lack of emotion and affection in her marriage and in her life, suggests that any attempt to create a self, in this tale, will only end in tragedy. Indeed, Chopin demonstrates that Louise Mallard must react against the patriarchal society that constricts her to specific gender roles and confines her to certain behaviors if she is to define a self. Mrs. Mallard's initial response to the news of her husband's tragic death suggests that this tale may not progress as expected: she "did not hear the story as many women have heard the same, with a paralyzed inability to accept its significance. She wept at once, with sudden, wild abandonment, in her sister's arms. When the storm of grief had spent itself she went away to her room alone. She would have no one follow her" (644). Chopin foreshadows Mrs. Mallard's awakening in her resistance to traditional modes of behavior and suggests that if she is going to create a self, she will need to define her identity outside of the roles and codes that she has adhered to previously. When Mrs. Mallard retreats to her room, alone, she suspends "intelligent thought," leaving behind the codes that restrict her, and begins to contemplate the "open square" of window before her, exploring her new consciousness (644). Yet Mrs. Mallard's conditioning within the Cult of True Womanhood has created a standard of behavior that fosters the suppression of her own unique desires and thus denies the creation of a self. When the freedom that Louise Mallard sees out the open window finally reaches her, she does not know how to react: "There was something coming to her and she was waiting for it, fearfully. What was it? She did not know; it was too subtle and elusive to name. But she felt it, creeping out of the sky, reaching toward her through the sounds, the scents, the color that filled the air" (645). Louise Mallard's oppression, her lack of identity, ensures an inability to understand her experiences, a necessary precondition to creating a fully realized identity. Nevertheless, the experiences are very real and very powerful: "She was beginning to recognize this thing that was approaching to possess her, and she was striving to beat it back with her will-as powerless as her two white slender hands would have been" (645). Mrs. Mallard's resistance to the freedom that is approaching her is a result of her diminished condition, which is reflected in her powerless hands. Angeline notes that, "While freedom is an innate desire for all creatures, patriarchal society conditions women to suppress and to repress their desire for freedom, so much so that the possibility of freedom, when available, is frightening" (62). In addition, as a significant aspect of the Cult of True Womanhood, the institution of marriage, which was founded on the objectification of women, leads to a denial of self and thus of feminine desires. While Brently Mallard is likely a typical, kind husband, for he "had never looked save with love upon her" (645), Mrs. Mallard will only escape the confinement of the institution of marriage, and thus have an avenue opened for her own definition of self, in his death. Chopin decries the oppression of the institution of marriage in her dramatization of Mrs. Mallard's growing awareness of her freedom: "There would be no one to live for her during those coming years; she would live for herself. There would be no powerful will bending hers in that blind persistence with which men and women believe they have a right to impose a private will upon a fellow-creature. A kind intention or a cruel intention made the act seem no less a crime as she looked upon it in that brief moment of illumination" (645). Chopin demonstrates that even within the confines of a loving and supportive marriage, the woman as wife lacks identity and voice. In Mrs. Mallard's briefly illuminated condition, she understands that any institution, whether kind or cruel, that suggests the suppression and repression of individual feminine desires denies the identity of women (Angeline 63). After accepting her new found identity, Mrs. Mallard exits from her room to join her sister and her husband's friend; yet the conclusion of the story reiterates that the patriarchal system that creates and expects certain codes of behavior denies feminine idenitity-denies, in fact, that such an identity might exist. When he enters the front door, Mr. Mallard "stood amazed at Josephine's piercing cry; at Richards' quick motion to screen him from the view of his wife" (646). Josephine's and Richards' reactions reflect their expectation that Louise Mallard, with her weak heart, would experience an overwhelming joy at the sight of her husband. Again, such a belief not only demonstrates their inability to comprehend Mrs. Mallard's new sense of self but also delimits the feminine self within certain prescribed gender boundaries. The doctor's determination that she died of "joy that kills" ironically reinforces Chopin's critique of the patriarchal system that defines women as things: the joy that Louise Mallard experienced, the joy of establishing an identity, meant that she could not live within her society (646). Louise Mallard's self is erased not only in her death but also in the inability of those around her to comprehend the true nature of the joy that she experienced. Mary Papke notes, in her introduction to Verging on the Abyss, that "patriarchal cultures reveal the well-promoted conceptualization, objectification, and institutionalization of woman as lesser beings, as 'other,' as secondary adjunct to man" (9). In "The Story of an Hour" Chopin explores not only the way in which patriarchal society, through its concepts of gender, its objectification of women in gender roles, and its institutionalization of marriage, constrains and oppresses women but also the way in which it, ultimately, erases women and feminine desires. Because women are only secondary and other, they become the invisible counterparts to their husbands, with no desires, no voice, no identity.

Here is a sample concluding paragraph from the essay on de Maupassant’s

Depending on the discipline you are writing in, the concluding paragraph may also contain a reflection on the evidence presented, or on the essay's thesis.

The Concluding Paragraph - Writing Program

Explain the meaning and purpose of the introductory and concluding paragraphs, and tell them how to structure the paragraphs in between in a logical order.

This section emphasises the importance of clear and coherent introductions and conclusions, and offers advice on how they can be achieved. Students often neglect introductions and conclusions, believing that they are of secondary importance in comparison with the main body of the essay. However, it should not be forgotten that the introduction and conclusion perform vital work in framing the main body and are crucial in positioning the reader in terms of the main arguments contained within the essay. Never forget that the essays are written in order to be read!

Literary Analysis Essay Conclusion Paragraph

This needs reinforcing: it may be useful to think of an introduction as a way of locating the reader with a set of reference points and guidelines. Provide him/her with the co-ordinates or main landmarks of the journeys s/he is about to set off on. Imagine yourself reading an article, newspaper column, etc. What do you want from the introduction? Normally, you would expect some strong reference to the main subject , theme or problem to be discussed, maybe some idea of what will be discussed on a secondary level, and some statement of how and why the various points arising will be discussed. An essay is no different.

As far as the scope of the conclusion goes, it must be restricted to whatever has already been stated in the body and the introduction. The concluding paragraph isn’t a place to mention fresh information. Any information that is to be added should be done in the introduction segment and in the body of the paper. It’s best to stick to a paraphrased thesis statement and the author's opinion in brief. The last sentence of the conclusion segment of the essay is typically the author’s opinion.

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How To Write A Conclusion Paragraph For A Literary Essay

Second, the conclusion is no place to bring up new ideas. If a brilliant idea tries to sneak into our final paragraph, we must pluck it out and let it have its own paragraph earlier in the essay. If it doesn't fit the structure or argument of the essay, we will leave it out altogether and let it have its own essay later on. The last thing we want in our conclusion is an excuse for our readers' minds wandering off into some new field. Allowing a peer editor or friend to reread our essay before we hand it in is one way to check this impulse before it ruins our good intentions and hard work.

Literary essay concluding paragraph - …

There are three key divisions in a well crafted paper- an introduction, a body and a conclusion. The introduction establishes the beginning of the paper and gives the reader a brief idea about what to expect. The body holds the core argument of the paper comprising of many paragraphs. The conclusion wraps up the argument of the paper suitably. In a compare and contrast essay the conclusion must summarize the paper’s major points and also provide a finishing outlook.

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