Marxism in The Awakening 11th Grade
When some audiences read The Awakening by Kate Chopin, they perceive a feminist piece ahead of its time, or search for hidden metaphors and allusions. Some readers would be content to simply ponder the significance of the title. However, although each of those matters is present and pertinent in the novel, they are merely subtexts under the true focus of the book: Marxism. The Awakening centers on the main character's digressions from societal norms, provides a narrow focus on social classes in the late 19th century United States, and provides thorough commentary on bourgeoisie values and their place in society.
The book opens with its main character, Edna Pontellier, basking in the wealth and status provided to her by her husband, Léonce, who is a successful businessman in New Orleans. Similarly, she bathes in the warmth of the sun at the island resort where she and her children spend their summer. While an extreme societal requirement and reverence of marriage is uncommon in today's society, matrimony was a vital and central part of life in the 19th century. Thus, it it is unexpected for Edna to consider her husband, “a person whom she had married without love as an excuse” (Chopin 77). Her profligate and rebellious manner...
Join Now to View Premium Content
GradeSaver provides access to 1039 study guide PDFs and quizzes, 8013 literature essays, 2248 sample college application essays, 348 lesson plans, and ad-free surfing in this premium content, “Members Only” section of the site! Membership includes a 10% discount on all editing orders.
Already a member? Log in