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Word Count: 1,133
We often find ourselves staring into the dark abyss of the recesses of our minds only to come to the conclusion that our lives have distinguished no significant progress however there is that exquisite day on which we take the path less frequented the day that decides the delineation of new and outrageous changes to our character Humanity is distinguished by the ability to draw on these newborn revelations and to make them a central piece of our character These manifestations of the human existence may take the form of a physical nature like those found in The Awakening or of a spiritual quality not unlike those found in the novel Anna Karenina Both novels are essential accounts of the human existence wherein characters are embraced by a growing sense of either their spiritual or physical being In Kate Chopins novel The Awakening there is a physically defined presence of desire and change lurking within the character of Edna Pontellier Edna is married into the Creole society a society in which people are virtuous because they satisfy its expectations not because they defy or elude them Robinson The differences in sexual norms between Creole society and a more modern society are apparent in The Awakening Ednas age in the novel places her as a contemporary of the generation of New Women who were educated in the 1890s they placed more emphasis on self-fulfillment moved into creative and artistic fields and fused their challenge of gender conventions with a repudiation of bourgeois Victorian sexual norms Smith-Rosenberg 177 Edna embodies this description so perfectly in her aspirations to a more fulfilling physical life are physically awakened within her character Chopins style relates so well the transformation taking place within Mrs Pontellier as her descriptions and symbols revolve around a physical axis From the beginning of the novel Chopin carefully relates Edna as a physical object as she describes Edna from Mr Pontelliers point of view while looking
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