Values And Freedom In The Awakening By Kate Chopin

Superior Essays
Emely Gonzalez
The Awakening by Kate Chopin
AP Literature - Pd. 3
Topic 5

In a lifetime, people undergo experiences for the purpose of change: it’s the inevitable. Our consciences constantly walk through the gates of enlightenment, culmination, or understanding, sculpting our individualities. Each vigilant episode creates our beliefs, morals, values, and knowledge; all interconnecting with one another. Our beliefs are influenced by knowledge, our values are branched from our beliefs, and our morals are a fusion of these elements to build an elaborate definition of what is right and what is wrong. These awakenings hold significance because they help find our place while residing in multitudinous world, where societal standards
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The birds in the cage mentioned at the start of the novel imitates this concept: the cage represents society’s limitations and Edna is the bird, gifted with the ability to fly, but unable to take flight. Edna dwells in a period of strict customs, where women are expected to fit the molded figure of a mother and a wife. She must do the house chores, care for her children, and please her husband’s needs and wants. Edna does not portray this depiction. She is the antithesis of tradition. Her relationship with her children is essential to this notion. “I would give up the unessential; I would give my money, I would give my life for my children; but I wouldn’t give myself” (Chopin 47). The role of children varies. Some people live for their children, but those people tend to lose themselves. Edna is avoiding this situation by creating a barrier that separates her individuality, an ironic priority, from her responsibilities. This was the dawn of her social awakening, which eventually extended to significant measures. “Once she stopped, and taking off her wedding ring, flung it upon the carpet… she stamped her heel upon it, striving to crush it” (Chopin 52). Edna attempting to damage her wedding ring was a symbol of her longing to eliminate the oppressions of marriage. She felt like the limitations implemented on her were overbearing, preventing her from finding herself amidst all the anguish and misery, preventing her from flying. So, she decided to move out of Leonce’s cage to seek relief and a sense of independence, to finally be able to use her

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