Teacher Guide

The Awakening Lesson Plan

About the Author

Published in 1899, The Awakening created a scandal because of its portrayal of a strong, unconventional woman involved in an adulterous affair. While Kate Chopin never flouted convention as strongly as did her fictitious heroine, she did exhibit an individuality and strength remarkable for even an upper-middle-class woman of the time.

Born on February 8, 1850, in St. Louis, Katherine O'Flaherty was the daughter of an immigrant Irish father and a French Creole mother. The O'Flahertys were members of the Creole social elite and were fairly well-off. When Kate was very young, her father Thomas O'Flaherty died in a work-related accident. He left behind a family of four generations of women...

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