Despite the rigid traditions of her society, Edna Pontellier attempts break free from her role as a wife and mother in search for autonomy, but, as a result, she is rejected by society and left unsatisfied. While she would like to be more independent, Creole society dictates that women should be mothers who devote their lives completely to family and duty. First, Chopin shows that there is an “absolutely inescapable link—basic, natural, and powerful—between the female identity and motherhood” to illustrate how women are bound to society’s belief that women must be mothers; Chopin does so by explaining that Madame Ratignolle, a friend of Mrs. Pontellier who she met during the summer, is always pregnant and therefore always connected to her children (Skaggs 90). Later she imparts that the typical women that summer in New Orleans “were women who idolized their children, worshipped their husbands” (Chopin 10). Her purpose in conveying thi...
... middle of paper ...
... because of the strict rules placed upon them, women are unable to live as they would like to live.
Bogard, Carely Rees. “‘The Awakening’: A Refusal to Compromise.” The University of Michigan Papers in Women’s Studies. 1977. Gale. Online. 28 January 2010.
Chopin, Kate. The Awakening. New York: Bantam Classic, 1981.
Elfenbein, Anna Shannon. “Kate Chopin’s The Awakening: An Assault on American Racial and Sexual Mythology.” Twentieth-Century Literary Criticism. (2003). Gale. Online. January 30 2010.
Malzahn, Manfred. “The Strange Demise of Edna Pontellier.” Twentieth-Century Literary Criticism. 2002. Gale. Online. 28 January 2010.
Muirhead, Marion. “Articulation and Artistry: A Conversational Analysis to The Awakening.” Southern Literary Journal. 2000. Proquest. Online. 29 January 2010.
Skaggs, Peggy. Kate Chopin. New York: Twayne Publishers, 1985.
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