Analysis Of Kate Chopin's The Awakening

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The focus of Chopin 's The Awakening is Edna 's conflict between her expected roles in society and her wants and desires. In this book Edna endeavors for self fulfillment, becomes seemingly impertinent, and ultimately feels cornered by the society in which she lives. Edna 's individualistic wants at first seem healthy, but quickly become out of hand as her thoughts become more chaotic. In her awakening, Edna is consumed by selfish desire. The aftermath of this desire leads her to feel as if she has been entrapped by society, ultimately leading to her destruction. Edna 's inability to surrender to the notions of society causes her think in illusory ways that are unsustainable. It seems inevitable that Edna, at some point, will arouse from the dream that she is living; Edna 's decease was imminent from the moment of her awakening. Throughout the book, it is clear that Edna is searching for contentedness; however, it seemed the more she longed for contentment, the more she—paradoxically—exhibited contemptuous behavior. This is exemplified by the thoughts of Mr. Pontellier: It sometimes entered Mr. Pontellier 's mind to wonder if his wife were not growing a little unbalanced mentally. He could see plainly that she was not herself. That is, he could not see that she was becoming herself and daily casting aside that fictitious self which we assume like a garment with which to appear before the world. (Chopin 67) It seems to be Chopin 's intention that Edna 's search for
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