Birth, whether of children or desires, existplays an active motif throughout The Awakening.
Edna Pontellier, as one of the leading characters, is a child discovering her very sense of self. Her attitude toward her children reveals that she is not the typical “mother-woman” the preferable type of woman in Edna’s society. The term, mother-woman is a reductive one which implies a singular purpose or value. The mother-woman is a mother; being one defines and regulates every aspect of her life. (51).
The critical elements to identifying Edna’s awakening. One thing that different Edna from other women in the society such as Madame Ratignolle is that she has not accepted her role unquestionably. The author, Kate Chopin, explains through her novel. Society’s’ demands and wishes for a woman, such as Edna. She has once told Madame Ratignolle that “she would never sacrifice her self for her children, or for anyone” . . .
“I would give my life for my children, but I would not give myself” (97). Edna tries explaining to Madame Ratignolle that this is something she is just beginning to understand from herself. She does not know why but she can not bring herself to give up herself for her kids.
The quote reveals right away Edna’s desire to become free of what society has placed upon her. Other women, Edna often seems irritated by her role as mother, and her attention to her children often occur as an afterthought. Distinct from Madame Ratignolle’s idea of a perfect woman’s life should bound to their children, Edna believes there is more to life than marriage, babies and the social obligations. The way she said other women who “idolized their children, worshipped their husbands, and esteemed it a holy privilege to efface themselves as individuals and grow wings as ministering angels “(51). Identified her feeling towards marriage and having children is corresponding to religion. Which implied the reason why she views her children as her products that she will need to take responsibility on, but she will not love them as normal “mother-women” will. However, Edna love her children just like every woman will, the thing she does not want to give up on is her identity. When Edna was arguing with Madame Ratignolle, she said: ” I will give up the unessential; I would give my money, I would give my life”(97).
Not only implied Edna’s idea of what identifies her as a person but also emphasized how much she valued her identity. The existence of Edna’s Children is aas contradictions and they. rR estrain Edna from freely following her heart,. iImprisoning Edna in the burden society. Edna finds herself “Fond of her children in an uneven, impulsive way. She would sometime gather them passionately to her heart; she would sometimes forget them” (63). Edna paradoxically hates this child because she feels “The children appeared before her like antagonists who had overcome her; who had overpowered and sought to drag her into the soul’s slavery for the rest of her days.
” (175). But she also loves them in the sense of she will sacrifice any “unessential” to her children. She feels secure regarding their happiness and welfare, but she will not miss them continuously.
Their absence sometimes can be a sort of relief. Edna anomaly thinking makes her a solecism in the society. What she thinks is different from the other “mother-women” which is also why Edna and Madame Ratignolle had a “heated argument” …
” like if the two women did not appear to understand each other or to be talking the same language.” (97) The book ends with Edna’ suicide, ironically bringing Edna to peace. Now, she is fully awake, but in contrast to how leveling the word awake look like, she dies inside. Edna looked straight before her with a self-absorbed expression on her face. She felt no interest in anything about her. “The street, the children, the fruit vender, the flowers growing there under her eyes, were all part and parcel of an alien world which had suddenly become antagonistic” (104).
After she’s rebirth, she awakes with a new realization that she will never be able to live the way she intended because of her gender. Her husband treats her as property he owns, he over controlling actions did not calm her but stir up a rebellious mind. She repeats to herself “To-day it is Arobin; to-morrow it will be someone else. It makes no difference to me, it doesn’t matter about Leonce Pontellier–but Raoul and Etienne!” She understood now what she meant by she “would give up the unessential” (97). But never for the children. The complex relationship with them and the children mess up with Edna’s mind she desperately needs a place to rest.
“she knew a way to elude them. She was not thinking of these things when she walked down to the beach” when she put herself in the water; she saw flashbacks from her childhood memories, is not it ironic that children would always want to grow up, but adults would continuously mourn for their never coming back childhood (175). Edna’s state of mind stamps Edna’s self-disclosure all through The Awakening. At last, Edna surrenders her life since she is unwilling to abandon herself—her wants, her desires and her interests to do what she needs egotistically and without respect for some other being’s desires. She can’t escape parenthood, nor would she be able to ever want to locate her glorified sweetheart. Hence, she abandons these disappointments her as she makes the most of her last snapshots of strengthening and isolation wrapped in the folds of the ocean, the murmur of honey bees, and the possess a scent reminiscent of pinks’ musk. KH,Much of the essay seems to say variations of the same ideas, written in different ways but repeated over and over again.
The last body paragraphs moves out of this sameness and makes an effort to develop it. Much of the textual support in this essay is not integrated or engaged. Make sure you can find a way to actually address the textual support you use. More about this essay later. Sincerely,Mr. Borneman