Awakening Questions Chatpers 1-9

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Chapter 1

1. The parrot says “Allez vous-en! Allez vous-en! Sapristi! That’s all right!” (Chopin 5). It means “Get out! Get out! Damn it!” The words foreshadow something tragic to occur in the end of the novel. The parrot is also caged and also speaks a language in which only the mockingbird can understand. The parrot symbolizes Edna Pontillier who seems to only be understood by some but not all and seems to be beside herself because her husband doesn’t seem to notice her.

2. Leonce Pontellier is Edna’s husband. He is wealthy and enjoys a drink in the local hub. He seems to show his love through material gifts given to his wife. He gets frustration or angry with his wife about how she raises the children. He gets very annoyed with the parrot’s incessant talking and whistling to the singing mocking bird and moves away from them so he is able to read his newspaper. He speaks to his wife in a harsh tone and where he seems to believe that she is not able to comprehend his old fashion ways.

3. Zampa, a pirate, is holding a merchant, Lugano, prisoner. Zampa demands Lugano’s daughter, Camilla’s, hand in marriage in order to set her father free. Previously, this girl named Alice, who was deserted by Zampa, had a statue erected in her honor by Lugano. During the wedding of Zampa and Camilla, Zampa is confronted with the statue which brings him guilt and he then proceeds to leave Camilla so that she can marry her lover.

4. The Pontellier children are young, happy, self-sufficient, and good-looking.

5. The role of the quadroon is as the nurse of the Pontellier family.

6. Robert Lebrun is a young, attractive flirt. He is attracted and attached to Edna during the summer such as when they go to the ocean. His part in the story is Edna’s romantic and sexual release that she doesn’t seem to get from her husband.

Chapter 2

1. Edna is comfortable in her marriage with her husband but doesn’t know how she truly feels. She is a romantic and is in love with Robert secretively. Her fantasies and dreams are appearing during her passion of Robert and see her marriage to Leonce as an end to that passion. Edna is described as “eyes were quick and bright; they were a yellowish brown… eyebrows a shade darker than her hair… rather handsome than beautiful… Her manner was engaging” (Chopin 9). She lived in Kentucky bluegrass country and now lives in the wealthy part of New Orleans.

2. The story is taking place on the Grand Isle, which is home to a resort.

3. Robert Lebrun is very young and doesn’t know any better. He plans to go visit Mexico where “fortune awaits him”. I think he will follow through with his plan because he is young and has time to go to Mexico and such. He also does not have any reason to stay in New Orleans yet. Plus he says that fortune awaits him in Mexico, so why wouldn’t you go to where fortune is?

4. The relationship in the beginning in nothing more than innocent, but as the summer goes on their relationship begins to grow more and more. Edna feels more alive than she ever has before in her marriage. Robert’s affections for Edna grow more too.

Chapter 3

1. When Leonce gets home, he is in excellent humor, in high spirits, and very talkative.

2. Leonce feels that Edna’s mothering skills are poor and that she is a neglectful mother.

3. Edna cries because her husband has insulted her mothering skills. But she does not know why she cannot stop crying and why she keeps crying. She understands that crying in apart of marriage, but it seems to be a purging of all the emotions she has bottled up.

4. Others believe that Mr. Pontellier is the “best husband in the world”.

Chapter 4

1. Mother-women are women who idol their children, practically worship their husband, and are pictured as ministering angels with wings of healing and care. Edna says that she would not risk her own life for her children, so she clearly does not care for them as much...
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