Customer Reviews for

Awakening: A Norton Critical Edition

Average Rating 3.5
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Most Helpful Favorable Review

2 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

Best short stories I have ever read

I read Kate Chopin's The Awakening for a Lit course.I have read many books.Chopin's stories stay in my mind.I remember her characters as REAL people.

posted by Anonymous on January 2, 2005

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Most Helpful Critical Review

9 out of 18 people found this review helpful.

Worst book ever!

This book was a waste of my money. The book had too many languages in it. The story line made absolutely no sense. The book was very slow from beginning to end. Im gonna warn you right now.....this book will waste your time and money.

posted by 8667145 on November 9, 2011

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 21, 2013

    So funny!

    I really enjoyed this book. It made me laugh out loud (literally) several times!!!

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 2, 2012

    I kinda liked it.

    I somewhat liked this book. I found it fairly easy to understand the plot line was easy to follow. I would have liked it better if the text was more up to date, though. The story is a bit cliche and the ending is very dramatic. There were parts that I didn't catch( Like i had no idea that Madame Ratignolle was even pregnant until i read the sparknotes). Overall, as far as my summer reading went, this was probably the best of the three.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 27, 2012

    Great read

    Loved this book. Found some of the themes applicable to todays life.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 4, 2011

    So great

    This is one of my favorite books! So glad that it's only $.95! (;

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 26, 2011

    Wonderful discovery

    This is such a well written book by an overlooked author who died ...don't some of the best ? ...too soon. I dreaded the ending of my first Nook book. Had I been born in that milieu, would I have been a woman like Edna, I wondered as I read.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 11, 2009

    zabbott review

    Freedom is a dominant nominal theme in the selected readings, "The Awakening" and "The Crucible". In "The Crucible" the entire village of Salem seeks freedom from the lies, witchcraft, and the oppression in and around the village. In "The Awakening", Edna seeks freedom from her husband, life, and finds freedom when she finally swims alone.
    The girls falsely accuse innocent people of being witches intentionally, I think the people of the village are seeking freedom from the lies the girls are telling, but some think they are telling the truth. Everyone is seeking freedom from the accusations, because they do not want to be the next victim to be accused of witchcraft. The town is old and run down, and the witchcraft accusations are taking a toll on everyone, and everyone is looking for freedom from the oppression that circles the town, as well as in surrounding towns. The large number of death took a toll on everyone in town.
    Ever since Edna married her husband, she had been looking for freedom, she was never truly happy with her spouse, and I feel that all she really wanted was freedom. When she could not gain that freedom, she wanted to be free from life. She was not happy with her husband; all Edna really wanted was to be happy and free. I think she chose to take her life, because she could not gain that sense of freedom. When she swam out by herself for the first time, this showed freedom, because women back then were not ever thought of to do anything but take care of the family. She showed that she was free from the stereotype of the common woman.
    Ultimately I think freedom was the dominant theme in these selections, because the main characters in each novel wanted freedom. The entire town of Salem wanted to be free from the witchcraft accusations. Too much death took a toll on the village people. Edna took her life to be free, this shows that the dominant idea throughout was freedom, and this connects these novels well.

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  • Posted September 11, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Oppression in the Awakening by Mclaus

    In this essay the nominal theme of oppression will be exemplified in positive and negative ways referring to the two books, The Crucible and The Awakening.
    In the Awakening the theme of oppression is used to express the true feelings of the main character, Edna. She lived a life with her husband and children but never seemed truly happy. She met Robert and fell in love with him. However, she could not shame her husband and knew it was her duty to stay with her husband. Edna is oppressed by the fact that she cannot love freely. Due to the fact she could not love freely, she kept all her emotions inside of her. She lived in a world of her own not sharing her feelings with anyone. Her emotions weighed her soul down with oppression.
    In the end, Edna releases herself from oppression and receives ultimate freedom when she realizes that she can no longer lie to the world or to herself. She wanted to be happy and wanted to be real. She opted to liberate herself from the struggling oppression she faced every day. In the Crucible, Mary Warren, Tituba, and Abby did the opposite of Edna. Instead of feeling oppressed they placed oppression on everyone else by accusing them of witchcraft and ultimately sentencing them to death.
    The girls also felt oppression themselves, especially because the practice of witchcraft was illegal in Massachusetts at that time. The girls could not practice witchcraft and did not have the right or freedom to do so. The theme of oppression is accurate in describing how people felt after being accused of practicing witchcraft. However, witchcraft was not always the problem. Abby wanted badly to be able to love John Proctor and him love her back. They had liked each other before but now John will have nothing to do with it. Abby feels oppressed and wishes they could love each other freely. Although it was not mentioned, John might have felt oppression too for not being free to love whom he wants and having to stay true to his wife.
    The two books both express the nominal theme of oppression in more ways than one. Oppression plays a good role in how the characters hide themselves from the things they may love the most. The theme explained the books perfectly.

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  • Posted September 11, 2009

    Truth in The Awakening and The Crucible by M.Merhaut

    Being truthful can be hard sometimes, depending on the situation you're in. If you're having family issues you might not be truthful to your friends. If you're having personal issues you're probably not being truthful to yourself. But, being truthful is hard in any situation but it is something that you should have in your life. In both the awakening and the crucible truth is an important theme, in the awakening truth is hard to find, also in the crucible truth is hard to find but if you search for it you will find it.
    In the awakening truth can be hard to come across. Edna is a woman who is living her life the way her husband wants her to live it. She has everyone thinking that she is a happy women, she has a wonderful husband and family. But, honestly I think that she wants more from her life. Edna stops being truthful when she starts to hang out with another man, her good friend Robert. He becomes one of her best friends, but she is not being truthful about it to her husband because her husband thinks that they are just friends. Also, she is not being truthful to Robert because, she is basically leading him on. When he realizes this he decides to spend an entire day with her and then the next day he leaves for Mexico and doesn't give Edna the time of day. Edna realizes that she misses her friend dearly, but she is not being truthful with herself because she knows deep down that she loves him more than she loves her husband and she won't admit it. Not being truthful leads Edna to the end of the book, she tries to get over how she feels about her friend and her life but she can't. So one day she goes to the ocean to take a swim and never returns. Edna lead herself to depression and then suicide, because of what I think is her not being truthful with herself or anyone else.
    In the book The Crucible truth is very crucial also. The one of the main characters is John Proctor, his wife Elizabeth and their friend Mary Warren are being charged of witchcraft. John needs help finding truth because through the book he is not very truthful. He is not truthful with the town, he tells the town that the little girls of the town are the witches and they should be sentenced to be hanged. But in reality he is actually the one practicing witchcraft, even though this does not come out till the end of the book, he is causing the trouble through the town because he is not being truthful. Also, he is not being truthful with his friends and family. He lies to all of them, telling them that he doesn't know who is practicing witchcraft, and he just puts the blame on all the women and children in the town. Last, he is not being truthful with the town's court. He, up until the end, leads them to believe that Mary Warren is practicing witchcraft with all the other girls in the town. So because he is not truthful he causes innocent women to be hung and other innocent women and children to be harmed, hurt, or just thrown in jail.
    In conclusion, truths can changes lives in a second. In the awakening, Edna was not truthful with herself so she was lead to depression and death. In the Crucible, John Proctor was not truthful with anyone. This just led the whole town to problems. So, if you live a truthful life then you could have problems but they most likely won't come to extremes like in these books.

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  • Posted September 10, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    Freedom as a Theme in Chopin and Miller MSigado

    Within the books, Awakening and The Crucible, the common theme of freedom is shown throughout the books in the characters, how they act, what they want, and freedom from the events that have occurred in the present or in the past.
    In the book The Awakening, Edna, the main character, seems to want freedom in different aspects of her life. Edna does not do the motherly chores that are expected of her by her husband and town. She also becomes interested in Robert and another man Alcee in the book which makes it seem as though Edna is tired of her husband and how he treats her. Edna also wants freedom from her heritage because she wants to be more carefree like the people in New Orleans, but cannot release herself because of the way that she was brought up. Edna also seems to want to have freedom from her family and not be tied down by their wants for her. Edna seems to be ashamed of her past in a way and the way that she has acted among people and seems to want to become a freer more carefree person than she truly is. You can see the slow transformation within Edna as she changes from a faithful quiet woman to a bolder, more carefree woman who wants to live life.
    In the book, The Crucible, the accused witches are constantly looking for ways to be free and not accused of witchcraft. They want to live their lives normally again without worrying about being killed or hung. Also, John Proctor wants to be free in a way from the life he lives and he wants to be free to have an opinion. Proctor is controlled by his wife and wants to stand up for his true beliefs without being judged. The town wants their freedom back as well, but they want to be free from the spirit of witchcraft that they feel is haunting their town and its people.
    Overall, it is important to realize how the theme of freedom has influenced these novels. It is shown through the characters and their actions and wants and events that have occurred throughout the present and past. The themes help us discover more about the books and help us realize how novels can be connected by one common theme that they share.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 10, 2009

    Oppression in Awakening and the Crucible by C. Leonard

    Oppression in the Awakening and the Crucible
    Oppression creates unique situations which result in the untimely deaths
    Oppression is a common thread between these two books. In Awakening, Edna represents the caged parrot at the beginning of the book. The bird speaks French and English, but it also speaks a language that nobody understands, and it seems to be only talking to the mockingbird. The only other person that understands Edna's feelings is the pianist, as she has been molded by society to fit certain criteria. The oppression that Edna feels comes from being in high society without being able to identify with them, and her husband does not help her, as he does not always seem to appreciate her, and treats her like a possession. Edna realizes this, and tries to become her own woman, and become independent, because she wants to get away from Leonce and because she loves Robert. However, she is similarly oppressed by Robert as he also treats her like a possession, and asks at one point if Leonce has given her up. Edna replies yes, but realizes that while she was trying to get away from society, Robert conforms to the views of women in society, and treats her like property; therefore, she is oppressed similarly as before with her husband. She is not free to make her own choices, and men want to own her like a possession, which she does not want, and this represents the Victorian views of women at this time in history. Eventually, Edna commits suicide because she cannot handle the oppression that she faces. This is similar to the oppression that occurs in the Proctor household, where Mary is treated like a slave by Elizabeth, because she is worried about her relationship with Proctor. This oppression is created by fear, and by actions of others beside oneself. Based on Elizabeth's fear that Mary will take her place with Proctor, she treats her like a slave to keep her busy and away from Proctor. If Proctor is as clean as he says it is, then there is no reason to treat Mary like a slave. But, because Proctor has done this before with Abigail, Elizabeth is wary of Mary. Because Abigail manipulates everyone she knows, Elizabeth is labeled a witch, and Proctor is sentenced to death for not confessing, along with eighteen other people.
    This oppression is deadly. In both the Awakening and the Crucible, Edna commits suicide, and nineteen people that are innocent are put to death by a system trying to uphold its honor. Oppression results in the death of more people, and causes suicides.

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  • Posted September 10, 2009

    The Awakening by N.Williams

    Dishonesty is presented in both The Crucible and The Awakening. Dishonesty is when the truth is not directly presented.
    In The Awakening, dishonesty is displayed through many ways. The first way would be through the main character, Edna. She does not know her true self. She is not sure if she is happy with her life, husband, and children. Throughout the book, she never really finds her inner self. Her husband, Leonce, does not think she is being true. It upsets him to see her on the deck not wanting to sleep with him or be around him. Robert is being dishonest with Edna. He leads her on and makes her fall in love with him. Then, after he returns from his trip, he decides that he does not love her and does not want to be with her. This causes Edna to commit suicide.
    The element of dishonesty is also displayed in the novel, The Crucible. The girls are constantly lying about the use of witchcraft. It starts in the beginning when they lie to Paris about what they did in the woods and ends up escalading into innocent people being hanged. The council also lacks honesty. As soon as they hear of an accusation they do not put much research or thought into it, the person is immediately taken into custody. In The Crucible, the whole society is dishonest. Everyone in Salem blames people whom they have a grudge against for practicing witchcraft.
    As you can see dishonesty leads to tragedy in these two novels. If Robert was honest with Edna in the beginning, she would not have gotten so attached and love sick. She also wouldn't have committed suicide. If the girls would have been honest about the witchcraft, people's lives would have been spared. Honesty is crucial for a society to function properly.

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  • Posted September 10, 2009

    The Awakening review by S.Kim

    In "The Awakening", Edna, expresses her true feeling about Robert, has less interest in her family, and begins to express herself by painting or enjoying other artistic matters. Edna is a normal housewife, has two children and somewhat wealthy household. However, she doesn't feel happy about her situation and she feels trapped in the whole family theme. She finally meets a young man, Robert, and falls in love. During these time period, she expresses her true feeling about Robert by missing him and wondering about him a lot. She starts to lose her interest on her husband and on her children, and begins to enjoy herself by listening to music and painting; a new way to express her true feeling and to enjoy rest of her life by full filing herself. She eventually moves out from her original house for a break, and lives by herself in her little house. In her own new space, she loves the freedom and individualism. However, Robert denies her love because she has a family and leaves Edna. Edna, once again was disappointed by the fact that she cannot enjoy her life by doing the things what her true feeling wants to do, she decides to find her freedom by swimming away; choosing death.
    In the Awakening, truth plays an important role, because the truth shows one woman's desires to become free from her current position (house-wife), to love a man she truly loves, and to live her life by mainly expressing her true individualism. The story concludes, unfortunately with her death, because she realized she couldn't full fill her true desires in this world.

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  • Posted September 10, 2009

    Review

    I believe that loyalty was clearly a theme in both of these books. Whether the characters in these books were loyal or not, it is an idea that almost all of the characters struggled with.
    In the awakening, I believe Edna is a perfect example of the struggle with loyalty. One reason is that she struggled to hold back her love for Robert. It was clear even in the beginning of the story that Edna was going to fall in love with Robert, even though she was married to Leonce. I believe that this is shows just how she felt about loyalty and that she didn't too much think about it. Also in the Awakening, Edna even has problems staying loyal to Robert, her new claimed love. The one man continues to come over and have dinner with her, and she knows that it leads to sexual acts, but she can't be loyal enough to deny the acts, to be faithful to Robert or especially Leonce, her husband. In the end of the book, it does become apparent that loyalty has been in the back of Edna's head the whole time. When Edna's friend tells her to think of the kids, it stops her in her tracks, she starts to feel that what she is doing is wrong, and ultimately her lack of loyalty is the driving force that leads her to take her own life.
    In the Crucible the same struggle with loyalty occurs. One of the main positive examples is shown when Parssis does not tell the names of the other accused and says that he will only give his name. This could be seen more as a personal loyalty and that he was not going to let her other emotions ruin what he believed was right and wrong. Another example of lack loyalty is shown when all the girls promise not to speak of what happened in the woods and then one of them caves in and tells. Although she told for the right reason, you could say that she was not loyal to her friends. And the most glaring example of lack of loyalty is in the court system itself. So many people in the story were accused and suffered the consciences for things they were not rightly accused of. I also find it contradicting that the court room would also have to be loyal and accept these accusations although they might not have been true at all.
    In both of these stories the characters struggled to say to loyal to either themselves or to others. The lack of loyalty led to all of the turmoil in these stories and shows us today why loyalty is so important. Although most of us are not loyal, we can still hope that stories like these give us negative examples so that we can learn from history and not repeat our mistakes.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 7, 2007

    Amazing Book

    I know most people find this book to be complete drivel, but it is actually really good. It is a feminism novel and everyone seems to have a problem with this, though I'm not sure why. But it was a different and great read. I had to read it my sophmore year in highschool. I love Chopin's writing style and the characters. If you like books from Sylvia Plath or Charlotte Perkins Gilman, you have to read this book.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 19, 2005

    Why Do They Teach This Stuff?

    A rag worthy of the utmost contempt. I'm astounded this work has stood the test of time and not ended up on a 'banned book' list.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 18, 2004

    Great depiction of the 19th century woman

    I was writing an essay on Kate Chopin and I didn't really know what she was famous for but when I got on the internet and looked her up and found that she had a book called the Awakenings, I was convinced it wasn't that great, yet I picked it up and read it anyways. I found that it gave an excellent depiction of the women of the 19th century and it made me cry, because she was right on the target of what many women felt, but didn't have the courage to say. She was an excellent writer and she made some excellent points and I think every woman needs to pick up a copy.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 17, 2003

    Self Discovery

    I believe this book touches on the issue that almost everyone deals with in their life time, discovering who they really are.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 11, 2002

    Interesting perspective

    I enjoyed watching Edna's journey in finding herself, but was perplexed at the concept that she only finds herself through other men. A contradiction in reality of "true" feminism, this books comes as close as Chopin's time period warranted.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 10, 1999

    This is an amazing book!

    'The Awakening' is the reflection of an époque that never allowed women to express their opinion. Through its pages, the reader can taste the meaning of being a woman in the last century. Kate Chopin shows us the dimension of freedom through the mind of a woman who never was free. Through Edna's awakening, Kate Chopin reveals the significance of being authentic, of fighting for beliefs, and of fighting against oppression. Knowing Edna, we can feel a woman's desire. In summary, 'The Awakening' is full of symbolism that allows the reader to look for answers and connect ideas.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 14, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

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