Critical Analysis of “The Awakening”

Essay by perkozA-, March 2010

download word file, 5 pages 0.0

Critical Analysis of "The Awakening" � PAGE \* Arabic �1�

Critical Analysis of "The Awakening"

Mariusz Perkowski

University of Phoenix

Critical Analysis of "The Awakening"

The Awakening by Kate Chopin demonstrates life dilemmas of women during the late nineteenth century. Period of time in the history that has many similarities to the position of women is society these days. While in our culture we have taken big steps toward changing the stereotypes, there is still a large groupe of people that believe a woman's place is in the home, taking care of her children and pleasing her husband. These beliefs are at the core of inequality both then and now. The main character lives through inequality having options available to her, but she always had to consider what those choices and speaking about them openly will do to her socially.

The novel "The Awakening" focuses on Edna Pontellier, the twenty-eight year-old women struggling with the constraints that society has placed on her.

The novel shows Edna's gender construction by the society that she lives in, based on Chopin's portrayal of her in the novel trying to obtain independence and control over her life in a society where she is expected to have none. Women like this are looked upon badly in a society that expects a woman to be a good mother and wife, nothing more or less. When she breaks these rules her husband thinks that she might have a mental illness, but Chopin in the novel points out that what he doesn't realize is that "Edna was becoming herself and daily casting aside that fictitious self which we assume like a garment with which to appear before the world".

Edna is not striving towards the equality of genders, but rather with her own sexuality, and the problems...