Edna Pontillier in Kate Chopin’s novella The Awakening seeks independence and freedom via an unconventional lifestyle that creates her internal conflict. The conflict is sparked by the Apollonian and Dionysian ways of life that surround Edna. The two contrasting forces influence her decisions and the way she interacts with others. Edna’s Dionysian and Apollonian influences effect the way that she treats her children, interacts with her husband, and relates to other women in her town. The freedom from responsibility and rules is attractive to Edna; however, it is a challenge to escape the rigid order of the Apollonian lifestyle. Edna’s struggle exemplifies the challenge facing all women of the nineteen-hundreds who strived to go against …show more content…
Edna’s marriage to Leonce “was purely an accident, in this respect resembling many other marriages which masquerade as the decrees of Fate. It was in the midst of her secret great passion that she met him. He fell in love, as men are in the habit of doing, and pressed his suit with an earnestness and ardor which left nothing to be desired” (Chopin 18). As Edna’s awakening develops, she begins to act out of character, driven by her inward desires. She starts spending more and more time with Robert, and while Leonce is aware, he pays no attention to the affair. Edna lives in a very male dominated society. Any orders given by the husband wouldn’t dare to be challenged by the wife. Edna has given Leonce that same sort of respect until “her will had blazed up, stubborn and resistant” (Chopin 31). She reaches a point where her influences are pulling her to resist Leonce and follow her own inhibition. Edna’s emotions stir in response to Leonce and she “wondered if her husband had ever spoken to her like that before, and if she had submitted to his command” (Chopin 31). Edna begins to become more aware of her position in her relationship with her husband. She is now comprehending the feelings she associates with the Apollonian and Dionysian influences in her
Click here to unlock this and over one million essaysShow More
Pontellier’s awakening. Throughout her journey we see her grow into the fully formed Edna taking her final leap but before she dives into her new ocean of opportunities we see her defy the limitations of a woman’s adroitness. This act may seem insignificant to our modern ideals but for a woman to attain knowledge equates to a woman demanding justification for her oppression. Edna’s determination and childlike characteristics can be noticed when she learned how to swim. Spending a full season determined to master a skill shows her persistence, a trait woman were not expected to have or want.
The Second Great Awakening was extremely influential in shifting the minds towards reform in people across America. The mentality of the people at this time was closed minded and had acceoted their way of living. Among other factors, Charles Finney played and important role in the success of the Second Great Awakening. “Much of the impulse towards reform was rooted in the revivals of the broad religious movement that swept the Untied States after 1790.” Revivals during the Second Great Awakening awakened the faith of people during the 1790s with emotional preaching and strategic actions from Charles Finney and many other influential preachers, which later helped influence the reforms of the mid-1800s throughout America.
Her frequent vacations to the island, like her frequent dips into the ocean, begin to spark a personal change within the woman. A Creole man, Robert, shows Edna a new dimension of feelings she never knew she lived without, and she begins to look through life through a new lens. Having been awakened for the first time, she sees injustice and mistreatment where she saw none before. Chopin uses Edna’s new observations and reactions to the culture around her to illustrate the myriad ways women were marginalized. In an ironic twist, the white woman from Kentucky proves to be more liberated than her more traditional husband, who grew up
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.
Edna’s house in New Orleans that Mr. Pontellier owns represents her responsibilities as a mother and wife. There, she must abide by Mr. Pontellier’s rules as well as society’s expectations of her. Discontent with those rules, Edna attempts to break from those responsibilities by breaking the vase in her husband’s house after trying to ruin her wedding ring. Here, she is no longer submissive, but trying to set herself free. Eventually, Edna moves to her own house that her husband does not own, which allows her to make her own decisions and allows her to decide what she will do each day.
Edna from Kate Chopin’s “The Awakening” can be perceived as morally ambiguous because of her affiliations with other men, and role-defying actions; however, both contribute to “The Awakening” as a whole. Due to Edna being romantically involved with Robert, she can be perceived as morally
This quote displays Edna defying societal norms and acting childish. In the society of the time women are expected to be very mature and obedient towards their husbands; this was not Edna. The display of Edna becoming mad at her husband and breaking a vase shows Edna putting in strength and effort to freely express her emotions to contribute to her awakening. In addition, Edna defying the societal norms shows her intentions of becoming more independent, as most women in society were not. Some may assume that Edna commits suicide as a failure to defy society, however through an allusion made by Chopin Edna is displayed clearly defying society by becoming an independent woman.
Edna fully understands that society would brand her as a terrible woman, but she does not view herself as a bad person. There is an external and internal difference that Edna hopes to one day reconcile. Chopin, instead of creating tension within Edna, created tension within the society and Edna with her newfound independence does not mind how society classifies her. Decisively, it can be concluded that the tension between outward conformity and inward questioning builds the meaning of the novel by examining Edna’s role as a wife, mother, and as nontraditional woman in the traditional Victorian period.
This novel, The Awakening, is about a woman named Edna Pontellier learns to think of herself as an independent human being. Also, Edna Pontellier refuses to obey against the social norms by leaving her husband Leónce Pontellier and having an affair with Robert Lebrun. Kate Chopin describes societal expectations and the battle of fitting the mold of motherhood in the Awakening by how Edna Pontellier and Adele Ratignolle contribute to their family in different ways. Edna Pontellier’s attitude toward motherhood is that she is not a perfect mother-women. Adele Ratignolle’s attitude toward motherhood is that she is a perfect mother-women.
This married woman with two children had inadvertently fallen in love with another man. Although he leaves, Robert is the most important part of Edna's awakening. He is the one who gives her the love that her own husband will not. She starts to truly blossom when she falls for Robert. After he leaves, she often goes to Madame Lebrun's home to look at Robert's baby pictures.
A woman with an independent nature can be described as rebellious, passionate, and courageous. In Kate Chopin’s novel, The Awakening, the reader is introduced to Edna Pontellier, a female who epitomizes the qualities of a woman with such an independent nature. Living in a “patriarchal society” that expects women to be nothing more than devoted wives and nurturing mothers, Edna attempts to seek out her true identity as it becomes apparent how unsettled she feels about her life. Throughout The Awakening, Edna Pontellier, dissatisfied with her duties as a mother and wife, decides to pursue her own interests and express her true identity, resulting in an awakening and her finding the courage to make the changes she deems as necessary. Edna Pontellier had two young boys, Etienne and Raoul, who were ages four and five, respectively.
However, Stone Illustrates, how disillusionment with love and the pleasure of childbirth, is actually a part of Edna’s growth toward artistic self-realization. Edna’s final claim to artistic authenticity, Stone suggests, is Edna’s suicidal return to her all-encompassing lover, the sea. Stone proclaims, “Edna drowns herself because she cannot live as a conventional wife or mother any longer, and society will not accept her newfound self. The solitude she enjoys makes for artistic growth, but she is bound to children, home, social duty. She will not sacrifice her new autonomy.”
Edna is married to Leoncé Pontellier, who she married to get away from her family and be free. She states, at one point in the novel, that she likes how Leoncé is obsessed with her but that she doesn't really love him the way she should and the way Leoncé loves her. Furthermore, Leoncé cares about his
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.