Published in 1899, Kate Chopin's novel The Awakening is considered to be one of the cornerstone texts of both American realism and the feminist movement. Modern critics praise The Awakening for its daring treatment of traditional gender roles as they were defined at the turn of the century, and for its exploration of a woman's search for self-fulfillment. However, when Chopin's novel first appeared, it met with harsh criticism. Reviewers objected to the unwholesome content of the novel, and although many considered the writing style outstanding, most critics dismissed the...
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