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Every step which she took toward relieving herselffrom obligations added to her strength and expansion as anThe Awakening by Kate Chopin introduces the reader tothe life of Edna Pontellier a woman with an independentnature searching for her true identity in a patriarchalsociety that expects women to be nothing more than devotedwives and nurturing mothers In this paper I will describeEdnas journey of self-discovery and explain why herstruggle for independence is no easy task I will alsodiscuss the relationship Edna has with two other main womencharacters and describe how these women conform or rebelagainst a society with many social constraints Finally Iwill discuss how the issues brought up in Chopins novel areThe Awakening begins in the vacation spot of GrandIsle At first we believe that Grand Isle is a utopiawealthy families relaxing at oceanside but it is here whereEdna first begins to realize her unhappiness The first signof dissatisfaction is when Edna allows herself to feel thather marriage is unsatisfying yet she must agree with theother women that Leonce Pontellier is the perfect husbandEdna can now ask herself if she has a good husband and isnot happy than should marriage be a component of her lifeEdna has two close relationships with other males in thebook but both prove unsatisfying and a block to herindependence The first relationship is with Robert LebrunThey swim they chat on the porch and offer each othercompanionship This is a flirtatious relationship arelationship similar to those Robert has had previoussummers with other married women but different becauseEdna being a foreigner allows herself to take Robertseriously and she falls in love with him This proves tragicbecause during the course of the novel the two will pine foreach other but Robert not wanting to mar his reputation as a gentleman moves to Mexico Even after his return the twomeet for a short time and then again Robert flees before The second role Edna begins to question is her role asmother Ednas husband scolds her
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