Women In Edith Wharton's The Awakening And The House Of Mirth

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In the late 1800’s and early 1900’s it was incredibly difficult for a woman to express her thoughts simply because she was not a man. The two novels, The Awakening, by Kate Chopin, and The House of Mirth, by Edith Wharton, use their writing to explore what it would be like for a woman to explore herself. The Awakening is a story about a woman, Edna, who is determined to find her true self no matter what it takes. In the story, Edna leaves her husband and begins living on her own, in her own house in order to find her independence. This search for independence is interesting because I believe that it is something that I can relate to, even in this day and age. In The House of Mirth, Lily struggles with whether or not she should get married like all the other women that she knows, or if she should just accept the fact that she will not have a husband. Both Wharton and Chopin’s stories use similar themes and ideas in order to show that regardless of whether women were trying to find themselves or save themselves, things were different for them simply because they were females. In both The Awakening and The House of Mirth, the theme of “Freedom vs Slavery” is used to show that life was undoubtedly different for men and women. In The Awakening, the theme of freedom vs slavery is shown because throughout the novel it addresses that women are nothing without their men and that it is impossible for a woman to do anything better than a man. I think that this idea is interesting
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