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20 Important The Awakening Quotes About Freedom And Femininity

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The Awakening is regarded a classic book.

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'The Awakening' is a novel by Kate Chopin published in 1899. It is originally titled ‘A Solitary Soul,’ in which the story depicts a young mother’s struggle to achieve sexual and personal emancipation in the postbellum American south’s oppressive environment. 'The Awakening' explores one woman’s desire to find and live fully within her true self.

"The Awakening" is a phrase that symbolically describes what happens to the main character, Edna Pontellier, as she becomes an aware and conscious human being in the book ‘The Awakening.’ In short, Mrs. Pontellier was beginning to realize her position in the universe as a human being, and to recognize her relations as an individual to the world within and about her. This may seem like a ponderous weight of wisdom to descend upon the soul of a young woman of 28, perhaps more wisdom than the Holy Ghost is usually pleased to grant to any woman.

This extract from 'The Awakening', Chapter VI conveys what you can expect from the book and one of the most important quotes from the book. "But the beginning of things, of a world especially, is necessarily vague, tangled, chaotic, and exceedingly disturbing. How few of us ever emerge from such beginning! How many souls perish in its tumult! The voice of the sea is seductive; never ceasing, whispering, clamoring, murmuring, inviting the soul to wander for a spell in 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."

This book depicts Edna Pontellier’s journey through life, awakening to the supernatural beliefs of individuality and natures connections. She discovers sensual joy and power in the sea, beauty in art, and independence in sexuality. Edna instead sacrifices her own life rather than her individuality and freedom because nothing less than the transformation of social reality would enable Edna to live. Here are some 'The Awakening' quotes.

If you like reading this, check out 'The Yellow Wallpaper' quotes and 'The Bell Jar' quotes.
 

Important Quotes From The Awakening

'The Awakening' has been described as a case study of 19th-century feminism. One of the central themes in the novel is that of self-ownership. It presents a woman’s right to have control over her own body and identity. Here are some of feminist 'The Awakening' quotes and quotes about What Edna is supposed to do.  

'The Awakening' is regarded as case study for feminism.

1. “The voice of the sea speaks to the soul.”

- Kate Chopin, 'The Awakening'.

2. “But whatever came, she had resolved never again to belong to another than herself.”

- Kate Chopin, 'The Awakening'.

3. “The voice of the Sea is seductive; never ceasing, whispering, clamoring, murmuring, inviting the soul to wander for a spell in abysses of solitude; to lose itself in mazes of inward contemplation. ... And, moreover, to succeed, the artist must possess the courageous soul.”

- Kate Chopin, 'The Awakening'.

4. “She’s got some sort of notion in her head concerning the eternal rights of women.”

- Kate Chopin, 'The Awakening'

5. “She was becoming herself and daily casting aside that fictitious self which we assume like a garment with which to appear before the world.”

- Kate Chopin, 'The Awakening'.

6. “The touch of the sea is sensuous, enfolding the body in its soft, close embrace.”

- Kate Chopin, 'The Awakening'.

7. “There was no despondency when she fell asleep that night; nor was there hope when she awoke in the morning.”

- Kate Chopin, 'The Awakening'.

8. “Edna lived a dual life - that outward existence which conforms, the inward life which questions.”

- Kate Chopin, 'The Awakening'.

9. “At a very early period she had apprehended instinctively the dual life—that outward existence which conforms, the inward life which questions.”

- Kate Chopin, 'The Awakening'.

10. “I would give up the unessential; I would give my money, I would give my life for my children, but I wouldn’t give myself.”

- Edna Pontellier.

Quotes About Freedom And The Sea

In this book, the ocean seems to represent both temptation and her sensual awakening. The Sea in 'The Awakening' symbolizes freedom and escape. Edna is reminded of the universe’s depth and her position as a human being within that depth when in the water. Here are some of 'The Awakening' important quotes about the sea.

The book is widely read even today.

11. “A feeling of exultation overtook her, as if some power of significant import had been given her to control the working of her body and her soul. She grew daring and reckless, overestimating her strength. She wanted to swim far out, where no woman had swum before.”

- Edna Pontellier, 'The Awakening'.

12. “There were days when she was unhappy, she did not know why —when it did not seem worthwhile to be glad or sorry, to be alive or dead; when life appeared to her like a grotesque pandemonium and humanity like worms struggling blindly toward inevitable annihilation. She could not work on such a day.”

- Kate Chopin, 'The Awakening'.

13. “I always feel so sorry for women who don’t like to walk; they miss so much—so many rare little glimpses of life; and we women learn so little of life on the whole.”

- Edna Pontellier.

14. “Mrs. Pontellier was beginning to realize her position in the universe as a human being, and to recognize her relations as an individual to the world within and about her.”

- Kate Chopin, 'The Awakening'.

15. “I can’t make it more clear; it’s only something which I am beginning to comprehend, which is revealing itself to me.”

- Edna Pontellier, 'The Awakening'.

16. “Even as a child she had lived her own small life within herself. At a very early period she had apprehended instinctively the dual life - that outward existence which conforms, the inward life which questions.”

- Kate Chopin, 'The Awakening'.

17. “We shall be everything to each other. Nothing else shall be of any consequence.”

- Kate Chopin, 'The Awakening'.

18. “A certain light was beginning to dawn dimly within her,—the light which, showing the way, forbids it.”

- Kate Chopin, 'The Awakening'.

19. “There was no despondency when she fell asleep that night; nor was there hope when she awoke in the morning.”

- Kate Chopin, 'The Awakening'.

20. “It was not despair, but it seemed to her as if life were passing by, leaving its promises broken and unfulfilled. Yet there were other days when she listened, was led on and deceived by fresh promises which her youth had held out to her.”

- Kate Chopin, 'The Awakening'.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly quotes for everyone to enjoy! If you liked our suggestions for these important 'The Awakening' quotes about freedom and femininity, then why not take a look at Zora Neale Hurston quotes and 'The House On Mango Street' quotes.

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