Symbols In Kate Chopin's The Awakening

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In The Awakening, Kate Chopin includes an abundance of repeated symbols to emphasize the awakening of Edna throughout the novel. These symbols are used to represent Edna’s sorrow and grief of her circumstances and to allow the reader to understand that in the end, Edna’s situational outcome will become tragic. The first symbol that is introduced in the first lines of the book is, a bird or parrot. The parrot was hollering, “Go Away! Go Away! For God’s sake!” over and over again (Chopin 1). The parrot is in a cage hanging just outside the door. This is a representation of Edna’s feeling of her life as a housewife. Edna is the parrot and is trapped in the cage, which is the house. It is keeping her from becoming herself. Edna is not a woman…show more content…
While Edna is married (and living with Mr. Pontellier), they live in a mansion. The mansion, even though it is brobdingnagian, it feels as if it is a tiny cage. This is because Edna believes it is what she is confined to because of her husband. While Leonce and the children are away, Edna purchases a new house for herself. The pigeon house allows Edna to be both at home and an independent woman. Edna no longer subjects herself to being a proper lady for Leonce and the community, but rather, “There was with her a feeling of having descended in the social scale,” (144). She can behave as she likes, without regard to how others will view her actions. The pigeon house provided her with independence and isolation, allowing her with, “Every step which she took toward relieving herself from obligations added to her strength and expansion as an individual,” progressing in her awakening (144). The reader can connect the fact that her house resembles one of pigeons signal well for Edna’s fate. This is another connection with the bird reference. It seems as if even though it feels for comfort, the house is actually destroying her. This is important for the reader to conclude as
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