The Awakening by Kate Chopin Personal Response

At first I was a little sceptical about reading the book, I thought it would be boring and reading “At the ‘Cadian Ball” and “The Storm” did not help at all. I am not going to lie, I hated reading the book at first, I found it boring, one dimensional, had too many names, too much drama that was not drama because it never became a problem; but after a while I started to grow a liking to Edna. Kate Chopin did not make Edna like the other characters, in the plays and books that we read, for example, in “A Doll’s house” Nora if she were a normal and logical person at that time, she would of never left her husband and kids without planing or she would have to come back in the end from her poor decision, it is those fairy tale finishes that happen but not quite right. On the other hand Edna’s characters has complex emotions but not exaggerated. She was a good mother but not in a way you will expect, she did take care of her children but wasn’t there all of the time. She fell in love with other people while being in a relationship and she accepted those feeling as they came, never neglecting them. She felt lustful when her husband and lover left, causing her to sleep with a man she just found attractive.

Kate Chopin gave us the most person like characters from that time. She did not want her kids but she did love them, she loved someone else and wanted to leave with her husband, she slept with someone else that want the lover or husband and when the lover came home she just ignored him, she hated that she had to be with her friend in a hard time, because let’s be honest, being with a friend going through something that is traumatic to you is hard and sometimes you want to put yourself first. She had valid feeling for not wanting ti be there, she thought those thing but she never went through with them and stayed with her friend all the way through.

In the end after coming to the realization that she was never going to have her perfect life, and if she even wanted to have something remotely close to it she was going to have to fight for it, and fight for it hard, she just went to the place she knew she would find peace, the ocean. She got to the shore and freed herself from her worries, the ocean calling her name, she swam until she got tired, not with the intention of killing herself but to free herself, but what is the difference really, for her those thing are completely different, for her killing herself is not wanting to be alive and hating life, and being freeing herself is letting go of her worries; if you put them side by side they are the same thing really, we do not know what happened after that feeling of nostalgia but we can all imagine what did.

In a way I relate to Edna, she wants to leave, she want to stop fighting and have a tranquil life, a happy life, one without worries, but if you are human that is impossible. Looking for that way to feel free, to relax but still not letting go of life.

I hope she was able to get to shore, leaving her old life behind start a new one, alone, on the beach, I hope she was able to smell those flowers again, and cherish the memories she made —with Mlle Reisz, Mme Ratignolle, Alcée Arobin, Léonce, her children, and Robert Lebrun— but not missing them, get a new old dog she could hear barking. I just hope she was able to come back and enjoy the little things in life.

2 thoughts on “The Awakening by Kate Chopin Personal Response”

  1. Hi Felix, I think it’s great you pointed out the fact that Kate Chopin’s character, Edna is one that is very complex. To further develop this idea, I want to hear what did you like about the author’s characterization and how it affects your viewpoint and the overall feeling of the story.

  2. Well done Felix, I think that you had made very good points about Edna and how Kate Chopin made her appear. I like that you pointed out that she has always put others first before herself and has done everything for everyone else. For example, when you pointed out that she didn’t want to be in the delivery room when Adele was giving birth because it was traumatic for her, she stayed regardless of that. I also agree with you and hope as well that Edna was able to find peace and start a new life, where she doesn’t forget the past but doesn’t; stay in those memories as well.

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