The path to self-discovery can be lengthy, but unlocking those defining attributes brings euphoric happiness. In Kate Chopin’s, The Awakening, the main character Edna Pontellier, a young woman living in the late nineteenth century, is constricted by societal pressures. Forced to fit into the role of the idealistic, elegant mother-woman, Edna struggles as her true character is unable to shine. Suffocating on the inside a breakthrough is needed to live her life without regret. Edna Pontellier finally awakens by shattering the stereotypes of women and exploring dynamic relationships with others on her own.
Edna refuses traditional gender roles to make her own independent choices in life. Women were seen as objects during this time period, belonging …show more content…
One male friend, Robert Lebrun, eventually turns into a lover for Edna, and without him, she feels absent of “brightness… color… [and] the meaning of … everything” (Chopin 61-62). This relationship of pure love she has built with Robert alters her perception of her own marriage. The connection concludes she was rushed into her husband, never once honestly loving Mr. Pontellier. Robert teaches Edna how to truly care, giving her purpose and motivation. Another male figure to alter her perceptions is Alcée Arobin, the bond being different from Robert as he acts “like a narcotic upon her” (Chopin 105). Cheating on Mr. Pontellier with Alcée, she has newly discovered absolute infatuation. This sexual awakening strengthens her womanhood. Although the brief affair offers little long-term, Alcée provides Edna with true desire, temptation, and excitement, never of which she had before. Lastly, the distinct character who contributes to her artistic and creative awakening is Mademossile Reiz, an out-of ordinary-woman, like Edna is very independent. As Edna visits this mentor figure more frequently, she becomes inspired and confident with her hobby of painting. Edna is able to express her emotions through the process and becomes an all-around happier individual when pursuing her interests. These relationships assist Edna in working on herself, all contributing to her
Click here to unlock this and over one million essaysShow More
The novel “The Awakening” by Kate Chopin is about Edna Pontellier, a wealthy housewife living in Louisiana during the late nineteenth century, and her journey of self-liberation. Edna Pontellier feels unfulfilled with her marriage to Leonce Pontellier, and her role as a mother. Edna meets, and falls in love with Robert Lebrun over the summer while her family is vacationing at a resort in Grand Isle. After the summer ends, and Edna returns home to New Orleans, she begins making lifestyle changes in order to bring back the feeling of happiness that she felt with Robert while in Grand Isle. Edna Pontellier experiments by having an affair, and attempts to live as an artist by taking up painting.
In The Awakening by Kate Chopin, we follow the journey of Edna Pontellier, a woman who struggles to find peace. The upper-middle-class wife to Leonce Pontellier and mother of two children face many challenges on her journey of self-discovery. She has two affairs, yet she can’t seem to find what brings her true happiness. She searches for a role model to help her figure out what to do. In The Awakening, the women Enda Pontellier interacts with are representations of how she is conflicted between following social norms and being free.
Edna developed a yearning for the pursuit of passion and sensuality, two major qualities that were absent in her marriage and home. She became enchanted with the idea of passionate love. This is shown by her relationship with Robert and with Alcée. These relationships resulted in a sexual awakening in Edna’s life. Mademoiselle Reisz 's piano performances brought an emotional awakening in Edna and fed her need for some drama in her life.
Kate Chopin’s 19th-century progressive novel, The Awakening, reveals a telling story of a woman on her way toward fulfillment in a male-dominant society. Chopin’s 3rd person narration allows readers to examine the objective actions and interactions of the protagonist, Edna, while simultaneously exposing the reader to Edna’s internal struggles within her own identity - that of a mother, a wife, and a female. Although The Awakening embodied controversy since most 19th-century societal constructs defied Chopin’s desire to search for her own individuality outside of societal expectations. Chopin eloquently invites the reader to explore Edna’s self-fulfilling journey amidst a constrictive and illusive backdrop. The essay seeks to explore how a
Acceptance, freedom, love, and lust, these conflicts arise in The Awakening by Kate Chopin as Edna Pontellier struggles with her internal conflicts. Chopin uses foils to demonstrate her evolution in the novel. In a time where women are expected to be subordinate, Edna begins to defy the standards and her oppressive husband. Compliance and individualism are exemplified by two polar characters: Adèle Ratignolle and Mademoiselle Reisz. These women act as foils and provide references to the reader in understanding Edna’s awakening.
Often times when a person is forced to outwardly conform while questioning themselves it leads to a struggle between their inner selves and what is expected of them. Outward conformity often oppresses a character’s true feelings of loneliness and being misunderstood. In The Awakening by Kate Chopin, the protagonist, Edna Pontellier, leads a dissatisfactory life. She is stuck in a loveless marriage, and has children, all in an attempt to conform to the social norm of the Victorian woman. However, she inwardly questions whether or not she should try to break free from this life to find her own independence and happiness.
Kate Chopin’s The Awakening was written at the end of the nineteenth century, where many roles for women began to change; therefore, the it appears to have been a turning point for females (“The Role of the Wife and Mother”). These changes in female roles were mostly due to the actions of women themselves, motivated by their desires to break away from the limits imposed on their gender The nineteenth century was a critical point in time for women, in regards to their roles in society (“The Role of the Wife and Mother”). In The Awakening, Edna goes through noteworthy changes in the course of the novel, which reconstructs her into a woman who goes against societal ideals regarding motherhood and marriage . In the 1890s, motherhood was viewed
It is common for people in everyday society to conform to society’s expectations while also questioning their true desires. In the novel, The Awakening, by Kate Chopin, the main protagonist Edna Pontellier is said to possess, "That outward existence which conforms, the inward life that questions." In other words, Edna outwardly conforms while questioning inwardly. Kate Chopin, uses this tension between outward conformity and inward questioning to build the meaning of the novel by examining Edna’s role as a wife, mother, and as nontraditional woman in the traditional Victorian period. Edna outwardly conforms to society’s expectations by marriage.
All these changes Edna made were so meaningful and represents her actual personality. Before her awakening she didn’t show anything of her true personality along with millions of women. Many people judged and mistreated her, but no matter what the obstacles were in Edna’s way she tried overcoming them the best way she can. Not only society was countering her ways of thinking, but also her husband, Leonce
Edna's struggle to reconcile her desires against traditional expectations provides insight into her moral and ethical dilemmas. Looking closely at her relationships with both of these men, Chopin elucidates Edna's changing understanding of morality and what is truly meaningful in her life. By examining Edna's interaction and feelings for both Leonce and Robert, Chopin provides a glimpse into her inner moral confusion and her eventual decision to choose an unconventional path. As a married woman, Edna frequently interacts with Robert without divulging the truth to Leonce. Though Robert and Edna both recognize the potentially scandalous nature of their relationship, he willingly engages and encourages Edna's feelings for him.
In Kate Chopin’ s novel, The Awakening, there are three identities inside of the female leading role, Edna Pontellier, being a wife, mother and own self. Edna was born in 19th century at the Vitoria period, a patriarchy society, women have low freedom to achieve personal goal. She married with Léonce Pontellier, a wealthy man with Creole descent. After having a child, her life is still unchangeable and as bored as before. Until she encountered Robert Leburn, Mademoiselle Reisz, and Alcée Arobin, her value of self-cognition has changed.
Throughout the nineteenth century, the age of Edna Pontellier, a female`s role in society was restricted to worshipping her kids and conforming to her spouse. Kate Chopin's The Awakening encompasses the disappointment and achievement in a female's life as she endeavors to survive these stringent cultural demands. Disregarding the stereotype of a "mother-woman," Edna fights the pressures that require her to follow a submissive and dutiful routine. Though Edna's eventual suicide misrepresents her struggles against a tyrannical society, The Awakening upholds and promotes feminism as a method for women to acquire individual identity. Birds play an imperative role in Edna's development.
If he were to say, ‘Here, Robert, take her and be happy; she is yours,’ I should laugh at the both of you” (108). Throughout the story Edna’s feelings for Robert grow stronger and deeper, so that by the end of the novel she simply longs to be with him. Yet parallel to that growth Edna has discovered her self and developed her own identity. The idea of a transfer of ownership of her person from one man to another is abhorrent to her, so much so that it would cause her to abandon her dream of being with Robert. Though she wants that very much, she is unwilling to lose her own identity in the process as she did when she was with Mr. Pontellier.
Edna wants to find her own identity away from her children and husband, later in the novel she states “I suppose this is what you would call unwomanly; but I have gotten into the habit of expressing myself. It doesn’t matter to me, and you may think me unwomanly if you like” Edna has gone on this awakening and discovered more things about herself (Chopin 108). Edna is not a motherly figure, she views herself as slaves to her kids and calls her kids “little antagonists”, in a society where a mothers duty is to her children. While Edna goes through this journey people start to question her, “It sometimes entered Mr.Pontelliers mind to wonder if his wife were not growing a little unbalanced mentally” (Chopin 59).