The Awakening And Zora Neale Hurston

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Kate Chopin’s The Awakening and Zora Neale Hurston’s Their Eyes Were Watching God are two similar and dissimilar books. One of the most frequent and recurring themes are the two main characters in the novels, Edna Pontellier and Jaine Mae Crawford. Both females long for freedom from the constraints of their society, which have made them dependent and inferior to men. While both main characters of their novels wanted equality, their living conditions and qualities of life varied drastically. The conditions that each woman was subject to were quite dissimilar as well due to life choices and intuition. Edna was white and wealthy and Jaine was black and poor. Jane had a very rocky upbringing and was orphaned by her mother to stay with her grandmother…show more content…
Edna has found her new found freedom by moving out of her big house she shared with her husband into a smaller house for herself. She is still trapped by her feeling s for Robert. He comes to visit her for the last time; Edna leaves Robert at her house and told him to wait for her. When she got back, Robert wasn’t there and left her a note, “I love you. Good-by –because I love you.” (Chopin, p148) which caused Edna to commit suicide because she realized she was not happy without her kids and society wouldn’t accept her because she left her husband. Jaine returns back to her hometown after Tea Cake dies. Jaine at the end of the novel is looked at as a survivor and a hero. She left to find happiness, but he happiness that she found was not text book. Jaine found that love starts from within and has to be explored and sought out for. She told her story to Pheoby and at the end she says, “Still and all, she’s he own woman. She oughta know by now whut she she wants tuh do.”(Hurston p 156) Edna Pontellier and Jaine Mae Crawford lived in two different time periods, but their struggle was the same. The struggle was to be free and to be able to venture out from their society-designated gender role as a housewife. What society defined as “acceptable” at the time one character succumbed to the pressures and the other woman was resilient and overcame the pressure. In The Awakening, Edna, is repressed by her husband, as is Janie in Their Eyes Were Watching God. Edna and Jaine are both self aware women; their inner selves question what their outer self
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