Edna Pontellier Quotes

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Main Characters

Edna Pontellier: The mother of two kids and the wife of Léonce Pontellier, Edna is a woman who does not want to conform to the Creole society's standards towards women. Throughout the book she struggles with her inner desires after falling in love with Robert Lebrun. She battles with the maternal responsibility to care for her family and children or to pursue her happiness and love.

Léonce Pontellier: The father of two kids and the husband of Edna Pontellier, Léonce Pontellier is a Creole man who enjoys the extravagance of the elite class. He is a very traditional, and authoritative man who would like to maintain a stable household where the mother (Edna) cares for the kids and keeps her job as a receptionist.

Robert Lebrun:
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I can understand why the book was banned at the time that it was published because the book pushed for ideas which at the time were considered unorthodox. However, I wholly agree with the message of the book which to me is that women should not have to put their “responsibility to family” before their own happiness. No person should be forced into a lifestyle that makes them feel miserable and depressed, and if a person is forced into that position they should be free to yearn and chase for their desires. I want to commend Léonce Pontellier because he was a pretty traditional character who believed that Edna was supposed to uphold her motherly duties. However, he never forced her to do anything that she did not like, he let her give up her Tuesday job and encouraged her to pursue painting. He even asked for the help of Dr. Mandelet, when he himself was unsure of how to respond to her despondent moods. When urged by Edna’s father to be stricter with her, Léonce did not push her away and only wanted the best for her. I also really liked Mademoiselle Reisz’s character because she seemed to be like a mirror of Edna because she encourages her to break away from “tradition and prejudice”. Mademoiselle Reisz believed in all the same things as Edna but I do not think Mademoiselle Reisz made the decision to pursue her happiness when given the choice therefore, she wanted Edna to succeed in finding her happiness. Finally, I am sad that there was no happy ending, but I do understand the symbolic ending of the book and how it solidifies the message of the

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