The first place Edna struggles to find fulfillment in is her marriage. Before getting married, Edna was a dreamer. She often found herself infatuated with various men in her town ranging from a soldier to a tragedian. She had hoped that upon marrying Léonce she could anchor herself into a more realistic role in life. But, in confining herself to this wifely role, she trapped herself within a marriage devoid of romance. What once seemed like a union of two like-minded individuals eventually became known to as “purely an accident” (575). Because of the dissatisfaction within her marriage, Edna ultimately grew to view all weddings as “the most lamentable spectacles on earth” (613).
Along with the role of marriage also comes children, which is another area in which Edna fails to find a sense of belonging. Though, Edna is not necessarily a neglectful mother, she fails to live up to the standard of motherhood that her husband wishes her to uphold. She cares for her children, but not in a consisten...
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...suicide in which she finally found her escape from society and solitude.
Though, once considered sexually scandalous, The Awakening by Kate Chopin is a beautiful story about so much more than sex. It is a story of struggle and heartache on behalf of a woman who seeks to find her place in a world unwilling to accept her as she is. Through the course of the story, Edna explores marriage, motherhood, independence, and various relationships as a means of seeking out freedom from solitude. But when all else fails, she finds the only freedom to be gained is freedom in death. In the end, no matter how hard she tried, and no matter what she did, she was always alone (Chopin 581.7).
Chopin, Kate. "The Awakening." The Norton Anthology of American Literature. Ed. Nina Byam and Robert S. Levine. 8th ed. Vol. C. New York: W.W. Norton, 2012. 561-652. Print.
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