Kate Chopin's The Awakening and Gustave Flaubert's Madame Bovary are both tales of women indignant with their domestic situations; the distinct differences between the two books can be found in the authors' unique tones. Both authors weave similar themes into their writings such as, the escape from the monotony of domestic life, dissatisfaction with marital expectations and suicide. References to "fate" abound throughout both works. In The Awakening, Chopin uses fate to represent the expectations of Edna Pontellier's aristocratic society. Flaubert uses "fate" to portray his characters' compulsive methods of dealing with their guilt and rejecting of personal accountability. Both authors, however seem to believe that it is fate that oppresses these women; their creators view them subjectively, as if they were products of their respective environments.
Chopin portrays Edna as an object, and she receives only the same respect as a possession. Edna's husband sees her as and looks, "...at his wife as one looks at a valuable piece of personal property which has suffered some damage." (P 2 : The Awakening) Chopin foils their marriage in that of the Ratignolles who, "...understood each other perfectly." She makes the classic mistake of comparing one's insides with others' outsides when she thinks, "If ever the fusion of two human begins into one has been accomplished on this sphere it was surely in their union." (P 56 : The Awakening) This sets the stage for her unhappiness, providing a point of contrast for her despondent marriage to Mr. Pontellier. She blames their marriage for their unhappiness declaring that, "...a wedding is one of the ...
... middle of paper ...
...ate UP, 1969. 881-1000.
Delbanco, Andrew. "The Half-Life of Edna Pontellier." New Essays on The Awakening. Ed. Wendy Martin. Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 1988. 89-106.
Gilmore, Michael T. "Revolt Against Nature: The Problematic Modernism of The Awakening." Martin 59-84.
Giorcelli, Cristina. "Edna's Wisdom: A Transitional and Numinous Merging." Martin 109-39.
Martin, Wendy, ed. New Essays on the Awakening. Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 1988.
Papke, Mary E. Verging on the Abyss: The Social Fiction of Kate Chopin and Edith Wharton. Westport, CT: Greenwood, 1990.
Seyersted, Per. Kate Chopin: A Critical Biography. Baton Rouge: Louisiana State UP, 1969.
Showalter, Elaine. "Tradition and the Female Talent: The Awakening as a Solitary Book." Martin 33-55.
Skaggs, Peggy. Kate Chopin. Boston: Twayne, 1985.
Need Writing Help?
Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.Check your paper »
- In the audacious nineteenth-century novel Madame Bovary, author Gustave Flaubert shamelessly challenges the social expectations of 1800’s France through the experiences of the fiery protagonist Emma Bovary and her acquaintances. Emma’s actions and thoughts, viewed as immoral and unbecoming for a woman in her time, express Flaubert’s opinions concerning wealth, love, social class, morality, and the role of women in society. Additionally, Flaubert’s intricate writing style, consisting of painstaking detail and well-developed themes and symbols, places Madame Bovary in a class of its own in the world of classic literature.... [tags: Madame Bovary, Novel, Gustave Flaubert, Rouen]
976 words (2.8 pages)
- 1. Conceptions: The Origin of a Story Gustave Flaubert in all probability got the idea for Madame Bovary when he and Louise Colet became lovers, in which the novel was written at the time of the affair. When Flaubert and his mistress first started to have the affair, they wrote love letters to each other as any other lover would. The letters that Flaubert would write were similar to the journals the authors use to help stimulate ideas for their novel. (TIF, 10) Flaubert in all wanted to expose the whole aspect of having affairs and encompassing mistresses.... [tags: Madame Bovary Essays]
3470 words (9.9 pages)
- Destiny in Madame Bovary Destiny: the seemingly inevitable succession of events.1 Is this definition true, or do we, as people in real life or characters in novels, control our own destiny. Gustave Flaubert's Madame Bovary exemplifies how we hold destiny in our own hands, molding it with the actions we take and the choices we make. Flaubert uses Emma Bovary, the main character of his novel, to demonstrate this. Throughout her life, Emma makes many decisions, each one of them affecting her fate and by analyzing these decisions one could see from the beginning that Emma is destined to suffer.... [tags: Madame Bovary Essays]
1053 words (3 pages)
- Emma Bovary and the Covent School Emma Bovary; intelligent, spoiled, and utterly obsessed with material concerns, is ironically placed by her father into a convent school where she fails to learn the lesson that would be most useful in her life: how to seek fulfillment through her platonic side. The convent section is very important because it will set the stage for all of Emma’s material obsessions and spiritual failures throughout the story. The entirety of Madame Bovary is diffused with a sense of hopelessness; the world is uncaring, fate is cruel, and God, if he exists at all, is painfully unsympathetic.... [tags: Emma Bovary covent School Essays]
726 words (2.1 pages)
- Communication in Gustave Flaubert's Madame Bovary In Gustave Flaubert's Madame Bovary, the quest for the sublime and perfect expression seems to be trapped in the inability to successfully verbalize thoughts and interpret the words of others. The relationship between written words and how they are translated into dialogue and action is central in evaluating Emma's actions and fate, and ultimately challenges the reader to look at the intricacies of communication. Flaubert's portrayal of Emma's reading habits provides the basic framework for evaluating the way she processes information.... [tags: Madame Bovary Essays]
1746 words (5 pages)
- Madame Bovary as a Template for Kate Chopin’s The Awakening The story of Edna Pontellier, the heroine of Kate Chopin’s The Awakening, echoes that of Flaubert’s Madame Bovary. Both novels tell about young wives who recognize the hollowness of their marriages and look outside them for fulfillment. While the similarities are deep and numerous, Chopin’s characterization and plot diverge from those of Flaubert. Madame Bovary does contain a hint of advocacy for women, however Chopin’s version of the story reflects the author’s status as one of America’s first feminist authors.... [tags: Madame Bovary Essays]
2177 words (6.2 pages)
- Emma’s Path to Destruction in Madame Bovary In his song, "Instant Karma!," John Lennon shouts an ominous warning to his listeners: "Instant karma's gonna get you / gonna knock you right in the head / better get yourself together, darlin' / pretty soon your gonna be dead... " The subject of his scorn may have been socially conservative Americans bent on the abolition of social progressives, but clearly anyone can gleam a bit of wisdom from such blunt counsel. Even Gustav Flaubert's eponymous heroine, Emma Bovary, may have been able to escape her grim cycle of misfortune, disappointment, and utter despair had she understood the relatively simple Hindu law of karma Lennon alludes to... [tags: Madame Bovary Essays]
2103 words (6 pages)
- The Inevitable Abyss of Madame Bovary Dr. Satler’s comments: This student’s paper displays the radiance of writing kindled by discriminating reading. His careful attention to words and their subtle tones in context translate into interpretive language that clarifies the subtle shapes of meaning. The abyss that so terrifies Emma in Madame Bovary is reality and the crushing finality of it. The fantasy world that she has constructed from early childhood takes on more and more substance until it becomes her alternate reality.... [tags: Madame Bovary]
918 words (2.6 pages)
- Madame Bovary The novel Madame Bovary was written by Gustave Flaubert in 1856. Flaubert was born in 1821, in Rouen, France. His father, being a doctor, caused him to be very familiar with the horrible sights of the hospital, which he in turn uses in his writings. In this novel, Charles Bovary, an undereducated doctor of medicine has two wives in his life. The first, Madame Dubuc, died. Emma Rouault, his second wife, after many affairs commits suicide. The doom of Charles and Emma's marriage is described by an elaborate connection of symbolic relations.... [tags: Madame Bovary Essays]
1074 words (3.1 pages)
- Fate Webster defines fate as a “ a power thought to control all events and impossible to resist” “a persons destiny.” This would imply that fate has an over whelming power over the mind. This thing called fate is able to control a person and that person has no ability to change it. Its been proven time and time again that the human mind can over come any obstacle. An asset to the mind is a persons will. With the combination of a person’s mind and their will to decide their own destiny this thing called fate can be over come.... [tags: Fate Destiny Essays]
442 words (1.3 pages)
- feminaw Seeking a New Identity for Women in The Awakening
- Use of Nature in Chopin's Awakening and Langston Hughes' Poems
- The Importance of Setting in The Awakening
- The Awakening and The Yellow Wallpaper
- Kate Chopin's Awakening - Edna Pontellier as Master of Her Destiny
- Edna Pontellier and Social Limitations in Kate Chopin's Awakening