Solitude as the Consequence of Independence For Edna Pontellier, the protagonist of The Awakening, independence and solitude are almost inseparable. While Edna does not hate her children, she comes to realize the extent that they tie her down, and she feels that she has given up her life for them.
Such an image evokes the legend of An analysis of avian symbolism in kate chopins the awakening, who achieved flight with a set of manufactured wings but fell to his death in the sea when out of pride he flew too high, and the sun melted the wax that held the feathers to his artificial wings.
The mother-women willingly allow their angel wings to be clipped by their way of life, made unsuitable for flight, in exchange for the security that accompanies their roles. As wives of wealthy businessmen, they are rewarded for carrying out their domesticated role with a place in upper-class society, lovely homes, fine clothes, and all of the other privileges and prestige that accompany their social position.
Themes are the fundamental and often universal ideas explored in a literary work. Edna learns that she can face her emotions and sexuality directly, without fear. She has been awakened to see what her life has become: Edna sees death as her real freedom, her final awakening, and while it seems like the cowardly way out, it has to take courage to end life.
As previously mentioned, I focused primarily on the imagery of birds and the sea and their significance in the novel.
The expectations of tradition coupled with the limitations of law gave women of the late s very few opportunities for individual expression, not to mention independence.
Chopin herself detested parrots because they imitate what they hear instead of singing their own song. Despite their chastity, these women speak freely and share their emotions openly. The Norton Anthology of American Literature.
When Edna meets her death by the sea, there is a mentioning of a soaring bird with an injured wing is present. And when she makes the decision to abandon her former lifestyle, Edna realizes that independent ideas cannot always translate into a simultaneously self-sufficient and socially acceptable existence.
Initially, Edna experiences her independence as no more than an emotion.
Yet when Edna begins to verbalize her feelings of independence, she soon meets resistance from the constraints—most notably, her husband—that weigh on her active life. Overall, the website touches on specific literary tools used in The Awakening through images we collectively have chosen and short essays that cover various topics, such as how symbolism influences emotional reactions to the work.
As Edna goes back to the place where she had begun her awakening, she walks to the beach and sees a bird who is hurt. The posts I created serve the purpose of contributing analysis on the major themes and symbolism portrayed in The Awakening. As the novel progresses, Edna realizes she has friends who at times know her better than herself and are always willing to give advice.
The novel itself was heavily based on the use of imagery, and that influenced our group to create a website that provided more critique, history and analysis of how and why the imagery was used and its impact on the audience.
Edna chooses death over a life she cannot fully live. As the novel begins, Chopin likens Edna to a bird in a gilded cage. When her story begins, Edna obeys this implicit rule to go along with the crowd but later, as she begins to come into contact with her true self, she behaves as her moods and whims dictate rather than doing what everyone else does, such as when she abandons her reception day.
Women writers since the s had used caged birds as symbols to represent the limitations of their own domestic lives. During her gradual awakening, Edna discovers her own identity and acknowledges her emotional and sexual desires. Chopin also uses wing imagery in her characterization of mother-women: When she swims for the first time, she discovers her own strength, and through her pursuit of her painting she is reminded of the pleasure of individual creation.
The novel in many ways is a romantic exploration of personal identity that Edna experiences, and this is displayed through the romantic imagery Chopin includes that are well connected to those specific experiences. If Edna is to defy her society and deny her family, she must be strong, and she must not care what anyone else thinks if she is going to make herself happy.
Work Cited Chopin, Kate. When Edna realizes that Robert loves her but is too frightened to be with her, she cannot take the pain and sorrow she feels. The birds that appear throughout the novel are the most intriguing symbols; they are used many different ways, to mean many different things, and to portray various emotions and situations.
Edna is not free, but that is okay because she has not yet begun to see what life has to offer; she has not yet begun to awaken. Expected to perform their domestic duties and care for the health and happiness of their families, Victorian women were prevented from seeking the satisfaction of their own wants and needs.
The novel opens with the portrayal of a pet bird that is in its cage.
And although Robert helps to teach her the language of sexuality, she wants to speak this language loudly, as it were, while Robert still feels social pressure to whisper.
Chopin helps the reader to understand fully the pressure society and family have put upon Edna, causing her to feel she will never be able to fly away to freedom.
Once Robert refuses to trespass the boundaries of societal convention, Edna acknowledges the profundity of her solitude. The use of birds is slipped in here also. Yet their acceptance of these rewards makes them beholden to their husbands, ensuring their dependence.
Edna is not a particularly motherly woman, unlike most women of her social circles.The Symbolism of Birds in "The Awakening" Symbolizes Edna Pontellier: both are trapped, longing for freedom and space.
This reflects Edna's desire to leave her middle-class life. The birds in this book are hard to miss.
Just take a look at The Awakening’s first line: “A green and yellow parrot, which hung in a cage outside the door, kept repeating over and over: Allez vous-en! Symbolism and Imagery My individual responsibility of our website was to contribute writings on the analysis of the use of imagery throughout Kate Chopin’s The Awakening, and how the imagery used was significant to the portrayals of particular themes presented by the author.
The Awakening: Symbolism In the novel The Awakening by Kate Chopin, Edna spends a lot of time napping and waking up throughout her story. When Edna goes to sleep or wakes up, it tells us that a change or decision will be made. The Awakening was Kate Chopin’s masterpiece, describing a wealthy businessman’s wife—Edna’s confusion, awakening, pursuit, and suffocation of self-awareness in the South of.
The Use of Birds as Symbols in The Awakening by Lori Dorrin The Awakening by Kate Chopin is a truly enlightening novel about a young woman who begins to really live her life for herself, breaking out of the various barriers of society and family.Download