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Symbols Connected to Freedom in Kate Chopin’s The Awakening
2002 (English)Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor)Student thesis
Abstract [en]

At the turn of the 19th century, when Kate Chopin´s The Awakening was published, men and women had very distinct roles in society. According to societal norms, there was no room for women’s creativity and individual growth. To begin with, the protagonist of The Awakening, Edna, is appreciated by her husband and society because she is a beautiful wife and a dutiful mother. However, she soon begins to understand her role as a woman in society, seen and treated more or less like an object, appreciated only because of her beauty and she is awakened to a yearning for freedom. Since symbolism is recurrent and conspicuous in Chopin´s novel the purpose of this essay is to investigate the symbols that reinforce the novel’s theme of freedom. By taking a closer look at the various symbols that are represented by characters, nature, animals, setting and objects, one is able to see the connections between the symbols and novel’s theme of freedom; for example, the bird imagery represents the captivity of women and their desire to become free and respected individuals. The sea is, however, the main symbol connected to freedom. It is constantly present talking to Edna. The essay explores the meaning of the various symbols and how they develop the novel’s theme of freedom.

Abstract [en]

At the turn of the 19th century, when Kate Chopin´s The Awakening was published, men and women had very distinct roles in society. According to societal norms, there was no room for women’s creativity and individual growth. To begin with, the protagonist of The Awakening, Edna, is appreciated by her husband and society because she is a beautiful wife and a dutiful mother. However, she soon begins to understand her role as a woman in society, seen and treated more or less like an object, appreciated only because of her beauty and she is awakened to a yearning for freedom. Since symbolism is recurrent and conspicuous in Chopin´s novel the purpose of this essay is to investigate the symbols that reinforce the novel’s theme of freedom. By taking a closer look at the various symbols that are represented by characters, nature, animals, setting and objects, one is able to see the connections between the symbols and novel’s theme of freedom; for example, the bird imagery represents the captivity of women and their desire to become free and respected individuals. The sea is, however, the main symbol connected to freedom. It is constantly present talking to Edna. The essay explores the meaning of the various symbols and how they develop the novel’s theme of freedom.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2002. , 15 p.
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-53692Local ID: ENG C-13OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kau-53692DiVA: diva2:1102252
Subject / course
English
Available from: 2017-05-29 Created: 2017-05-29

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Citation style
  • apa
  • harvard1
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
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