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The Awakening (Modern Library) Hardcover – 29 Sep 1994

4.2 out of 5 stars 20 customer reviews

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Hardcover, 29 Sep 1994
£41.98 £0.20

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 406 pages
  • Publisher: Random House Inc; New edition edition (29 Sept. 1994)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0679424695
  • ISBN-13: 978-0679424697
  • Product Dimensions: 2.5 x 12.7 x 19 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 4,203,653 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

Product Description

Review

"A Creole Bovary is this little novel of Miss Chopin's."--Willa Cather --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

About the Author

Katherine O'Flaherty (1850 – 1904), known by her married name Kate Chopin, was an American author of short stories and novels. In 1899, her second novel, The Awakening, was published to much outrage and harsh criticism based upon moral, rather than literary, standards.


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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
A century after the publication of Kate Chopin's novel, its themes -- a woman's awakening to the full potential of her sexual passion and her sense of being smothered by marriage and motherhood -- have become the staple ingredients of 'chick lit'. It is thus easy to overlook how revolutionary and shocking the events and ideas of this story must have seemed at the time. Then, the book was banned from public libraries; now, it is required reading in some American schools.
In many ways, both in theme and treatment, it resembles "Madame Bovary". Although Chopin lacks Flaubert's scope and breadth of vision, she reaches deeper into the soul of her heroine. Her style is restrained and elegant and some modern readers, accustomed to a pacier and more explicit treatment, may grow impatient at times. But there is beautiful writing here, embodying rich characterizations, strong evocations of time and place and thought-provoking moral ambiguity. An undoubted masterpiece.
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Format: Paperback
Sadly, I had the chance to read only a few of the stories in this book. This was on my reading list for a paper on American literature, and I approached it apprehensively, having never heard of the author before. Stunning prose: poetic, unpretentious and fluid, describing characters whose closeness was painful. 'The Awakening' gained momentum as it progressed. The only problem was the ending, which didn't seem to live up to its promise. Feminist, but without turnings males into cardboard cut-outs!
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
The reader comments on this book illustrate a truth. Great literature rarely inspires a tepid response. This carefully drawn portrait of a young wife's awakening deserves comparison with Madame Bovary, but that, as well, was a sensational text, condemned by the readers of the day as inflammatory, condemned by modern readers as dull. The Awakening is an inspired and inspiring work. This book is full of symbolism and passion, and though the story is an eventually bleak one, it resonates with truth. This is a book about the pain of coming to life, and the power of inescapable maternal entanglement. Read it if you have an ear for beautiful language, a wise soul, and an active brain. If you prefer your truths to be merely pleasant, your endings to be tdily happy, and your grey matter to remain inert, leave The Awakening on the shelf.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
I read this a few months ago for a book group. I was hopeful that I would enjoy "The Awakening", but did not (though it provoked one of the most interesting discussions the group ever had since opinions about it were very sharply divided). The story concerns a bored wife, Edna Pontellier, with a generous but distant husband who seems to be attracted to anyone, especially any male, who can provide her with some distraction from the domesticity she has drifted into.

If the author wants us to admire Edna Pontellier because of her search for something meaningful in her life she has failed with me, and Edna's actions at the end of the book makes this seem a bizarre attitude to take, even if we neglect the haphazard nature of this search. If, on the other hand, we are actually meant to see Edna as a weak and self-indulgent woman, and to learn from her to be more suspicious of our own desires and our ability to silence our conscience, then Kate Chopin has created a masterpiece, albeit an unlikeable one. Probably the writer was deliberately ambiguous and torn herself between these two reactions.

Although my reaction to the book was dominated by impatience with Edna, and shock at her indifference towards her own children, the book has some very good points. The description of Creole society is fascinating and many of the beach scenes, and especially a trip to an island roughly midway through the book, have a dreamlike and impressionistic quality that is memorable.
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Format: Hardcover
Great book and value - thank-you!
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Beautiful scenes of summer dreams,awakened love that can not exist,moments of discovery with reality of life......didn't expect the ending ....Sad and beautiful.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I must confess that I had never heard of Kate Chopin until I read this book for an Open University course. The work has been likened, understandably, to Flaubert's Madame Bovary, and while there are resonances of that work, the heroine (or anti-heroine, perhaps) Edna is a more profound and complex character than the somewhat vacuous Emma. This is a brave work; written at the end of the nineteenth century, it addresses issues that novellists rarely dared to tackle until some sixty years later. There is no moralising and one of the beauties of the novel is that the reader can read just as much between the lines as the text provides. Kate Chopin deserves her renaissance.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Great book, prompt delivery, safe packing. Many thanks. John
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