The Awakening

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AP: Literature and Composition Summer Project

Quote | Response | Question |

Entry 1:
"...looking at his wife as one looks at a valuable piece of personal property which has suffered some damage." Chapter 1, pg. 3 | If anything is displayed by this quote, it's the common way women were perceived in the time period this book was published. They were treated like nothing more than objects to own, just property to take care of and show off. | How does this relate to Edna's problem? It shows what she has to deal with everyday, being treated and seen as an object. The tone used by the narrator is almost spiteful in a way, indicating that the he/she side with Edna. |

Entry 2:
"He reproached his wife with her inattention, her habitual neglect of the children. If it was not a mother's place to look after children, whose on earth was it?" Chapter 3, pg. 7 | What this quote conveys to me, is the how almost unnatural the thought that anyone besides the mother could take care of children. It shows how closed minded, about the roles of women, people were in these times. | How does this relate to Edna's problem? Much like the quote above, it displays what women of these times were expected to do. I would imagine Edna feels trapped by this expected norm of her and other women. |

Entry 3:
"The mother-women seemed to prevail that summer at Grand Isle. It was easy to know them, fluttering about with extended, protecting wings when any harm, real or imaginary, threatened their precious brood. They were 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." Chapter 4, pg. 10 | The phrase “mother-women” is funny to me. It feels like the this quote and the one in Entry 2 go hand in hand. It seems like this phrase is used to describe women who passively fall into this accepted norm of caring for the children and being property. The symbolism of the women fluttering about with protecting wings is important to the overall probably Edna has. She and the other women are expected to be flightless chickens protecting their chicks, when really Edna wants to fly. | Tone Used The tone used at the end of the quote about the women ”idolizing their children, worshiping their husbands and how it was a holy privilege to efface themselves” almost feels like the narrator is depicting a false religion that the “mother-women” are following. |

Entry 4:
"The voice of the sea is seductive; never ceasing, whispering, clearing, murmuring, inviting the soul to wander for a spell in the abysses of solitude; to lose itself in mazes of inward contemplation. The voice of the sea speaks to the soul. The touch of the sea is sensuous, enfolding the body in its soft, close embrace." Chapter 6, pg. 17 | This quote is foreshadowing Edna's eventually journey into the sea. It's almost like the symbolism is describing the beginning of the earth. | Author's Style The continually use of biblical symbolism in this book almost gives the book a dual meaning, it protests both the old idea of women and the belief in false religons. |

Entry 5:
"The very first chords which Mademoiselle Reisz struck upon the piano sent a keen tremor down Mrs. Pontellier's spinal column. It was not the first time she had heard an artist at the piano. Perhaps it was the first time she was ready, perhaps the first time her being was tempered to take an impress of the abiding truth...She saw no pictures of solitude, of hope, of longing, or of despair. But the very passions themselves were aroused within her soul, swaying it, lashing it, as the waves daily beat upon her splendid body. She trembled, she was choking, and the tears blinded her." Chapter 9, pg. 33-34 | To me, this quote is showing how happy Edna is to see a women being able to do what she wants. She's happy because it shows that her...
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