The Awakening By Kate Chopin The Lady in Black - Symbolism Farther down, before one of the cottages, a lady in black was walking demurely up and down, telling her beads. (V) The lady in black was reading her morning devotions on the porch of a neighboring bath- house. Two young lovers were
exchanging their hearts' yearnings beneath the children's tent, which they had found unoccupied. (VII) The lady in black, creeping behind them, looked a trifle paler and more jaded than usual. (VIII) The lovers, who had laid their plans the night before, were already strolling toward the wharf. The lady in black, with her Sunday prayer-book, velvet and goldclasped, and her Sunday silver beads, was following them at no great distance. (XII)
The lovers were all alone. They saw nothing, they heard nothing. The lady in black was counting her beads for the third time. (XII) He (Mr. Farival) whispered an anxious inquiry of the lady in black, who did not notice him or reply, but kept her eyes fastened upon the pages of her velvet prayerbook. (XIII) Interpretation of Lady in Black Symbolism
(Beginning of Awakening) An indescribable oppression, which seemed to generate in some unfamiliar part of her consciousness, filled her whole being with a vague anguish. It was like a shadow, like a mist passing across her soul's summer day. (III) Lady in Black and the Lovers are like shadow figures, never developed; they can represent the process of awakening. The Lady in Black represents an old stultifying religious attitude. The Lovers represent the early
stage of infatuation with her husband. Neither of these attitudes will prevail. These juxtaposed images are the restricting and unrealistic aspects of a life Edna is leaving behind. Feminist Interpretations of Text Elements of a Feminist
Argument Edna treated as property by Leonce Leonce is ultimate male chauvinist Leonce accuses Edna of neglect of children Ednas swim is a symbol of independence Edna awakes to new awareness of self Breaks vase; stomps on ring; goes out alone
Edna lives alone, etc. Society & Robert reject Edna suicide inevitable Jungian Interpretations of Text The animus is the deposit, as it were, of all woman's ancestral experiences of man-and not only that, he is also
a creative and procreative being, not in the sense of masculine creativity, but in the sense that he brings forth something we might call . . . the spermatic word. [Jung] The Naked Man - Animus Animus. Jungs term for the archetype of masculinity within the psyche of every woman. Jung equates this with the soul. When she heard It (a musical piece Solitude in a minor key) there came before her imagination the figure of a
man standing beside a desolate rock on the seashore. He was naked. His attitude was one of hopeless resignation as he looked toward a distant bird winging its flight away from him. A bird with a broken wing was beating the air above, reeling, fluttering, circling disabled down, down to the water. The Sea as Nature God the everlasting voice of the sea, that was not uplifted at
that soft hour. It broke like a mournful lullaby upon the night (III) Her glance wandered from his face away toward the Gulf, whose sonorous murmur reached her like a loving but imperative entreaty. (V) The voice of the sea speaks to the soul (VI) of a summer day in Kentucky, of a meadow that seemed as big as the ocean to the very little girl walking through the grass She threw out her arms as if swimming Oh, I see the connection now!" " during one period of my life religion
took a firm hold upon me I suppose until now sometimes I feel this summer as if I were walking through the green meadow again; idly, aimlessly, unthinking and unguided. (VII) As she swam she seemed to be reaching out for the unlimited in which to lose herself. (X) Animus (Robert) Directs Edna to Seek the God of the Sea On the twenty-eighth of August, at the hour of
midnight, and if the moon is shining--the moon must be shining--a spirit that has haunted these shores for ages rises up from the Gulf. With its own penetrating vision the spirit seeks some one mortal worthy to hold him company, worthy of being exalted for a few hours into realms of the semi-celestials. His search has always hitherto been fruitless, and he has sunk back, disheartened, into the sea. But tonight he found Mrs. Pontellier. Perhaps he will never wholly release her from the spell. Perhaps she will never again suffer a poor,
unworthy earthling to walk in the shadow of her divine presence." "Don't banter me," she said, wounded at what appeared to be his flippancy. He did not mind the entreaty, but the tone with its delicate note of pathos was like a reproach. He could not explain; he could not tell her that he had penetrated her mood and Animus Development 1.
2. 3. 4. Appearance in fantasy of male power (naked man) Animus provides capacity to act (decision to move out) Animus possession the word (projection onto Robert) Animus as Daemon spiritual voice (mediator of all else) ah! si tu savais ce que tes yeux me disent = ah! if you knew what your eyes
say to me What image of the South is conveyed in The Awakening? What symbols/images/passages stand for the South?
A green and yellow parrot, which hung in a cage outside the door, kept repeating over and over: Alez vous-en!Alez vou-en! Sapristi! Thats all right.! He could speak a little Spanish, and also a language which nobody understood, unless it was the mockingbird that hung on the other side of the door, whistling his fluting notes out upon the breeze with maddening persistence.
Mrs. Pontellier, though she had married a Creole, was not thoroughly at home in this society of Creoles; never before had she been thrown so intimately among them. the Creole husband is never jealous; with the gangrene passion is one which has become dwarfed by disuse.
Never had that lady seemed a more tempting subject than at that moment, seated there like some sensuous Madonna, with the gleam of the fading day enriching her splendid color. Madame Ratignolle could not(dance), so it was she who gaily consented to play for the others. She played very well, keeping excellent waltz timeshe was keeping her music on account of the children, she said;
because she and her husband both considered it a means of brightening the home How would you imagine a typical Southern man/woman? Which
characters in the novel represent stereotypical Southerners? Who could be seen as modern/emancipated?
The mother-women seemed to prevail that summer at Grand Isle. It was easy to know them, fluttering about with extended, protecting wings when any harm, real or imaginary, threatened their precious brood. They were women who idolized their children, worshiped their husbands, and esteemed it a holy privilege to efface themselves as individuals and grow wings as ministering angels. Never had that lady seemed a more tempting subject than at that
moment, seated there like some sensuous Madonna, with the gleam of the fading day enriching her splendid color. Her name was Adele Ratignolle. There are no words to describe her save the old ones that have served so often to picture the bygone heroine of romance and the fair lady of our dreams.
Madame Ratignolle had been married seven years. About every two years she had a baby. At that time she had three babies, and was beginning to think of the fourth one. She was always talking about her condition. Her, condition, was in no way apparent, and no one would have known a thing about it but for her persistence in making it the subject of conversation.
You are burnt beyond recognition, he added, looking at his wife as one looks at a valuable piece of property which has suffered some damage. You were not so very far, my dear; I was watching you.
A few days later a box arrived for Mrs. Pontellier from New Orleans. It was from her husband.[ ] all declared that Mr. Pontellier was the best husband in the world. Mrs. Pontellier was forced to admit that she knew of none better. He reproached his wife with her inattention, her habitual neglect of the children. If it was not a mothers place to look after children, whose on earth was it? He himself had his hands full with his brokerage business.
This is more than folly, he blurted now out. I cant permit you to stay out there all night. You must come in the house instantly. He hoped she had not acted upon her rash impulse, and he begged her to consider first, foremost, and above all else what people would
say. Mrs. Pontelliers eyes were quick and bright; they were a yellowish brown, about the color of her hair. She had a way of turning them swiftly upon an object and holding them there as if lost in some inward maze of contemplation or thought. Her eyebrows were a shade darker than her hairshe was rather handsome than beautiful. Her face was captivating by reason of a certain frankness of expression and a contradictory
subtle play of features. (p.510) and she went on crying there, not caring any longer to dry her face, her eyes, her arms. She could not have told why she was crying. Such experiences as the forgoing were not uncommon in her married life. (p.512) I would give up the unessential; I would give my money, I would give my life for my children; but I wouldnt give myself. (p.545)
Edna, left alone in the little side room, loosened her clothes, removing the greater part of them. She bathed her face, her neck and arms in the basin that stood between the windows. She took off her shoes and stockings and stretched herself in the very center of the high, white bed. How luxurious it felt to rest thus in a strange, quaint
bed, with its sweet country odor of laurel lingering about the sheets and the mattress!...She looked at her round arms as she held them straight up and rubbed them one after the other, observing closely, as if it were something she saw for the first time, the fine, firm quality and texture of her flesh. ( page 536) Suicide scene complete (pages 597/98)
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