First, Chopin uses the plot to help tell her story. Chopin uses two different stories. She talks about Calixtas husband Bobinot and her son Bibi on their journey home. She uses this subplot to foreshadow the storm that is approaching. Chopin writes, Mamall be fraid, yes, [Bibi] suggested with blinking eyes (Chopin 154). When Chop mentions this, she is talking about the storm and that it will be a fierce one. A storm is coming that is bad enough to scare Calixta. From this Chopin is saying that Calixta will be home by herself, and vulnerable to the elements. Chopin uses Bibi and Bobinot as foil characters to give the reader further insight to the main story.
Chopin also reaches the climax of the story while the main characters, Alcee and Calixta, reach their own sexual climaxes. Adultery is often seen as bad. Instead, in the resolution Calixta and Alcee are filled with joy and share their newfound joy with their families (Rosenblum.) Chopin ends her story with, The storm passed and everyone was happy (Chopin 156.) Chopin leads up to this with Bibinot worrying about Calixta yelling at him and Bibi for being muddy and being late. He even came up with apologies, but forgot them when Calixta was overjoyed to see them. The storm did pass. Everyone was happy. Although, plot is essential for telling the story, Language is also very important.
Next, Chopin uses language to make her story vivid. Chopin allows her characters thoughts and feelings to be shown by writing her story in omniscient third-person. She writes how Alcee views Calixta by using very descriptive words. Chopin uses language like vivacity, her warm, palpitating body, and as red and moist as a pomegranate seed. One passage from Chopins story reads, The generous abundance of her passion, without guile or trickery, was like a white flame which penetrated and found response in depths of his own sensuous nature that had never yet been reached (Chopin 155). She shows the passion between Alcee and Calixta just by writing such beautiful and complex sentences. Chopin wants her readers to feel the intensity and feel the lust between the lovers. She also wants the reader to understand how each of the characters feels for each other. Rosenblum states that, Chopin depicts sex as liberating and enjoyable (Rosenblum).
While plot and language play a mojor role in her story, setting is the most important. Last, the setting is the most important element of Chopins story. Chopin uses the storm to represent to sexual force between Calixta and Alcee. The storm is approaching as Alcee rides up on his horse. As he is approaching the house the storm grows even stronger. When he enters the house the storm rages. Calixta goes to the window and lightening strikes a tree throwing her into Alcees arms. It is as if nature is forcing them together. The sex they have is natural, fierce, and leaves them happier, just as the storm is natural. The storm does no damage, but leaves the world a more beautiful place. Harris writes, Chopin offers a moral tale in which a womans sexual experience is not condemned but celebrated and in which she uses that experience not to abandon her family but to accept them with a renewes sense of commitment. The Storm allows a woman to gain personal fulfillment and to remain happily married (Harris). Their affair did no damage to their families, but reignited passion that they shared with their families.
Rosenblum writes several good points about the storm. He states, This innocent adultery has given everyone a breath of freedom, cleansing them as the summer storm purifies the air, The storm is not only natural but also powerful, like the passions it symbolizes, and [Chopin] reinforces this idea [sex is natural] through other imagery drawn from nature, likening Alcee to the sun and Calixta to a lily and a pomegranate (Rosenblum). Chopin is saying that sex is a natural force that we cannot avoid. It is essential like life.
It renews the very essence of ones being. This very sexual and sensual story was written so well. Chopin not only used a great plot, and great language, but she had the perfect setting for her story. She shows how the worst things can sometimes be the best. She wants her readers to understand that something morally wrong is not always bad. The affair changed Calixtas relationship with her family for the better. Like the storm, it may have seemed bad at first, but when it was over it left her a brighter, happier, and more devoted mother and wife. The storm passed, and everyone was happy (Chopin 156).
Chopin, Kate. The Storm. Lit. Boston: Wadsworth, 2012. Print. Harris, Sharon M. The Storm. Magills Survey of American Literature, Revised Edition (2006): 1. MagillOnLiterature Plus. EBSCO. Web. 20 Sept. 2011. Rosenblum, Joseph. The Storm. Masterplots II: Short Story Series, Revised Edition (2004): 1-2. MagillOnLiterature Plus. EBSCO. Web. 20 Sept. 2011.