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Condition: Used: Good
Comment: The item shows wear from consistent use, but it remains in good condition and works perfectly. All pages and cover are intact (including the dust cover, if applicable). Spine may show signs of wear. Pages may include limited notes and highlighting. May include "From the library of" labels.
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The Awakening and Selected Stories of Kate Chopin (Enriched Classics) Mass Market Paperback – Unabridged, July 1, 2004

3.9 out of 5 stars 62 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

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

From the Inside Flap

The Awakening shocked turn-of-the-century readers and reviewers with its treatment of sex and suicide.  In a departure from literary convention, Kate Chopin failed to condemn her heroine's desire for an affair with the son of a Louisiana resort owner, whom she meets on vacation.  The power of sensuality, the delusion of ecstatic love, and the solitude that accompanies the trappings of middle- and upper-class convention are themes of this now-classic novel.  

The book was influenced by French writers ranging from Flaubert to Maupassant, and can be seen as a precursor of the impressionistic, mood-driven novels of Virginia Woolf and Djuna Barnes.  Variously called "vulgar," "unhealthily introspective," and "morbid," the book was neglected for several decades, not least because it was written by a "regional" woman writer.  This edition also includes selected stories from Kate Chopin's Bayou Folk and A Night in Acadie, and an introduction and notes by Nina Baym. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.
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The latest book club pick from Oprah
"The Underground Railroad" by Colson Whitehead is a magnificent novel chronicling a young slave's adventures as she makes a desperate bid for freedom in the antebellum South. See more

Product Details

  • Series: Enriched Classics
  • Mass Market Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster; Enriched Classic edition (July 1, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0743487672
  • ISBN-13: 978-0743487672
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 0.9 x 6.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (62 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #143,767 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By J. Jacobs VINE VOICE on April 10, 2004
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Stories include: (Wiser Than a god, A Point at Issue!, A Shameful Affair, Miss McEnders, At the 'Cadian Ball, Desiree's baby, Madame Celestin's Divorce, A Lady of Bayou St. John, La Belle Zoraide A Respectable Woman, The Story of an Hour, Regret, The Kiss, Athenaise, A Pair of Silk Stockings, The Storm, Charlie). Some of the short stories seem repetitive, but The Awakening is wonderful, especially considering when it was written and how much Chopin went through as a result of publishing this scandalous tale. She tells the story of a woman realizing her sexuality and the feminist ideas she conveys are far ahead of her time.
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Format: Paperback
I got turned on to KC in college through one story--The Storm--and a little background on her (she wrote ahead of her time, was published and then forgotten until the 1960's Feminist Movement dug her up again). She became one of those authors I lodge in the back of my head to investigate later. I happened upon this wonderful book at the book tent at New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Fest and grabbed it. The book gives a great introduction to her and her time. I was lucky enough to read The Awakening and some of her other short stories while staying at Grand Isle. She was and is a great writer. She wrote from a viewpoint that bucked the norms of her time---the late 1800's, she wrote of women who didnt fit the mold of mommy and wife. She wrote eloquently of an area, era, and culture that I love...New Orleans, Cajun Country, and Grand Isle amongst others. I dont write many reviews, but after reading the only other review for this book I felt a different opinion should be heard. She is a good read.
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By A Customer on September 20, 2003
Format: Paperback
This book is certainly not for the illiterate dime novel crowd. It is a story of one woman's struggle to find herself within the narrow confines of Victorian society. The situations and characters are well developed and some literacy in French is helpful but not required. If you read a bit about Kate Chopin the main character seems to be fairly autobiographical at least where rebellion from female conformity was concerned. The book is not a new idea, a person finding their wings and learning to fly. But the idea of a female doing this in Victorian society was brand new. The book was considered obscene and subversive at the time and that alone makes it worth reading.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
At the start of the novel, Mrs Pontellier is experiencing the awakening of her consciousness: she is beginning to recognize her relations as an individual to the world within and about her. Her husband, a man of forty, regards her as a valuable piece of personal property. And yet she is the sole "object" of his existence. Why does she seem so little interested in things which concern him? Does she not value his conversation? A vague anguish in Mrs Pontellier is a symptom of something dark developing within. Is this unfamiliar feeling the sign of an inner revolt against Fate? What is the force behind the creation and the dispelling of our moods?

As a young woman of twenty-eight, Edna Pontellier finds herself pondering on the nature of female wisdom. Is it about posing as a mother-as-angel in the home or is there something more? Can a new world be created in front of her, different from the one in which she had been living? Can a woman have access to a kind of wisdom belonging to the spirit, that only men had been previously vouchsafed? Edna is learning the pleasure of getting lost in the maze of inner contemplation. She wants to learn whether life has been the result of accident or the decree of Fate.

The moon, the sea water and Chopin seem to cast a mystic spell upon her soul. Exulting with these feelings, she aims to conquer her own self, a feat prohibited to women at the time. The winter after the summer holidays at Grand Isle, and after her "friend" Robert has gone to Mexico, Edna Pontellier has already given certain steps towards the delirium of selfhood she craves for: she will only do as she pleases, and what she pleases the most is art. Is she not growing a little unbalanced mentally? For her, art is ultimately related to the rights of women.
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Format: Paperback
The author, Kate Chopin, began to write when she was age thirty six. She had a ten year productive career the introduction by Nina Baym discloses. She died at age fifty three. Her work went out of print to be revived in the early 1960's. She wrote two novels and close to one hundred stories following the death of her husband and her mother.
Women, including Kate Chopin, writing after the Civil War turned to regionalism. By 1893 railroads had wrought a tremendous change. Regional writing, as the introduction points out, is tourism of the imagination. The stories are short and skilfully done. Even the use of dialect for the Cajun and Creole speakers is not off-putting. The stories have a wonderful stripped down to the essence quality. One is reminded of Chekhov.
In THE AWAKENING it is noted that the summer colony staying at the Lebrun cottages are almost entirely Creole. An exception is Edna Pontellier. She came from old Presbyterian Kentucky stock. Even as a child Edna tended to live in her own world. She feels a sense a of exaltation when she learns to swim. She has children, a husband, and becomes infatuated with a young friend, Robert Lebrun. Later Robert leaves to go to Mexico. Returning to New Orleans, Edna spends time with the people she has met at Grand Isles. Her husband is caught up in his household furnishings. When she decides to leave to live by herself in a smaller house, he prudently closes their large marital house to avoid gossip. Her absolute disregard for her duties as a wife shocks her husband. Her doctor can find no trace of the morbid condition ascribed to her. Robert Lebrun returns. He shows reserve. Leonce her husband and her children are part of Edna's life. She yields to the water of the gulf.
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