Sacrifice In The Awakening

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In The Awakening the main character Edna is going through a life changing event. Edna unfortunately is living in an era where women are supposed to be dependent and devoted to their husbands and a full time mother. Edna doesn’t want to play that role anymore and she wants to become independent. Edna’s want for independence and becoming her own person is finally achieved when she sacrifices her life and kills herself. Edna sacrificing her life shows how her values begin to change from only caring about her family’s needs to now caring about her own needs/wants. This sacrifice also portrays the meaning of the work as a whole which is finding freedom from the constraints that society not only puts on Edna but on women in general.
Edna has a husband
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For a long time Edna was living a life full of rules and obligations that she didn’t want to be a part of. Society expected Edna to be a full time house mother and wait on her husband hand and foot. Most women loved playing this role and loved the fact that their family is the center of their life but not Edna. She was very unhappy and all the things that made her happy were looked down upon such as swimming and having an affair. Edna killing herself finally gave her the freedom that she wanted and let her become independent. Edna was finally free from the life that she didn’t want anymore and although the sacrifice had to be her life it’s what finally made her happy and feel free.
In conclusion, Edna sacrifices her own life because she starts to value herself and her own wants/needs not just the wants and needs of her family. Sadly, the only way for her to have that freedom and independence she was longing for was to commit suicide. The whole book is surrounded by the idea that Edna just wants to be free and be her own person so she didn’t have to be dependent on her husband. Edna wants to break free from the constraints society has put on her and finally is free when she takes that last swim out into Grand
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