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Suicide by Artists in the Late 19th century In the 19th century behavioral and social problems such as problems in the home intense worries misery and inebriation were among some of the reasons for artists to commit suicide Other strong contributions to suicide included social disorganization and alienation Furthermore people believed that the denial of the will to live could be found in the fact that some the ways people expressed themselves were not accepted at that time It was also believed that some of the people who committed suicide had the will to live but were dissatisfied with the conditions under which they were forced to live Edna Pontellier the protagonist in Kate Chopins novel The Awakening was an aspiring artist whose life was filled with passion and turmoil in a time of social change Although in the end she too met her demise Ednas family background can foreshadow her demise by illustrating the kind of social structure she was brought up to live in Edna comes from a very strict and religious family which might ultimately have caused her demise Falret attributed suicide to four major causes 4 civilization and religious fanaticism Evans 20-1 This proves that suicide by artists in the late 1800s was thought to be caused by civilization or religious fanaticism Since She was the middle child of an ambiguously religious family Griffin-Wolff 156 she too an artist of her time fit that same scenario Moreover The family has two faces then it sins during the week with its racing and land grabbing and it atones on Sundays with pious condemnations 156 This shows that Ednas family contributes to her death by being very religious in that they went to church on Sundays Ednas father a distinguished tall and thin man who wore his coats padded and had a silky mustache and hair to match further portrays her family life and social expectations The old gentleman her father
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