Kristen's Reviews > The Awakening

The Awakening by Kate Chopin
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really liked it
bookshelves: fiction, kindle

Why so many ugly one star reviews? All about as insightful as the ubiquitous one star reviews of Lolita which call Nabokov the man a child molester, raving morons who can't distinguish a character from an author and go beyond simply missing the point. And how ironic that all these reviews seem to be from women raging that this book (which they all obviously read for their 'gender theory' class) features a character who abandons her children. Ugh, women who criticize this as a feminist novel because the main character isn't a good mom and then base their ratings solely on how much they like the main character. Do these people only give high ratings to books with characters they like? Do they think women characters in fictional books shouldn't have flaws, ennui, and basically everything that makes a character good? They want the character to be human but lack any flaws, they want her to be a feminist hero but denounce her for not putting her children before herself. Is it that they would have accepted it in a male character but not from a 'wife and mother' because when I read these reviews that is what it looks like to me. Why is she in all those one star reviews held up and judged as a woman and not a human being? Is that not the essence of feminism? If so these dumb broads are the ones who are anti-woman, not Chopin, who wrote this in 1899 for fuck sake!

The whole point of the book is about her discovering herself as an individual, and that even as an individual we exist in a society and as humans have to balance being an individual with the fact we are social animals. Her failure isn't that she abandoned the children but that she abandons herself. If this has a failure as a feminist novel it is the formulaic ending where she is punished for her desires. I'd like to see a story when the woman runs away and is not punished by death, as is the always the ending, now that would be progress!

Not that it's a great book, my few friends who rated it gave in mostly 3 stars, and that's about right, I'm adding an extra star out of spite.

Also, this is my first book read on my new kindle, so that was pretty exciting!

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Reading Progress

July 5, 2011 – Started Reading
July 5, 2011 – Shelved
July 5, 2011 – Shelved as: fiction
July 5, 2011 – Shelved as: kindle
July 7, 2011 – Finished Reading

Comments Showing 1-50 of 85 (85 new)

message 1: by Esteban (new)

Esteban del Mal Pedophile dyke.

Kristen Dude, atheist Jesus didn't refuse to die for your sins then move to Sweden just so you could mock everything he stands for, which is nothing. Think about it.

message 3: by Esteban (new)

Esteban del Mal Ontological. Unicorns.

Kristen Leave Ricky out of this.

Paquita Maria Sanchez The man lover and the man hater in a battle of wits! I suggest you two settle this with thumb wars. When you're ready, Kristen, Esteban's hand will be waiting for you (i.e. scratching his ass or making a satan symbol while listening to Motörhead).

Kristen Paquita Maria wrote: "The man lover and the man hater in a battle of wits!"

Wait, which one am I?

Paquita Maria Sanchez You're Esteban! ...wait, what?

Brianne WELL said. I'm very impressed with your take on it. And all the one star reviews are kinda disparaging.

message 9: by Kristen (last edited Jul 22, 2011 03:12PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Kristen Thanks, I'm glad someone else appreciate it.

And those one star reviews were just horrendous! Like the first one "sleep with whoever you want feminist rhetoric" what book was that chick reading? Edna sleeps with one man other than her husband twice in the book. Oh and the 7th review down is just the worst, what a fucking asshole! Every single thing she said about that book was just wrong, just flat out wrong! Now I'm angry all over again.

Brianne Kristen wrote: "Thanks, I'm glad someone else appreciate it.

And those one star reviews were just horrendous! Like the first one "sleep with whoever you want feminist rhetoric" what book was that chick readi..."

I like how "sleep with whoever you want" gets labeled "feminist rhetoric" offhand too. I agree- there's so many shitty reviews and it seems like most of them are people who barely gave it any more attention than their Lit teachers made them give it. I personally loved it, just trying to put together a decent review. I think yours hit the nail on the head the whole way around.

Kristen Apparently there is a whole subculture of self-hating chicks on Goodreads who give anything that even hints at women asserting themselves one star out of "principle" ("principle" meaning it contradicts their religious belief that women are filthy, innately inferior beings who have no business demanding the same rights as men. And you can bet they teach this to their own daughters while they're homeschooling them.)

Selina I get what you're saying, but personally I just can't like a book if I can't connect with the main character. I don't have to like them, but I have sympathize with, or at least understand them. For example, I tried to like the Hunger Games, and it was a really good book overall, but, in the end, my frustration with Katniss' flat character made the book a 'meh'. Even though Katniss was an awesome kick ass character, who I admired for her ability to take action, her personality was so...bland and basically non-existent. I just couldn't feel a connection. Same with Edna. When she was happy, I ...just couldn't care less. When she was sad, I ... still didn't care. :/

message 13: by Josh (new) - rated it 1 star

Josh A books central protagonist serves not only as your guide in the world of the book, but also as your main emotional tether to the world therein. The character never considered anyone else in her actions and thoughts, showing herself absolutely selfish to a husband and children who didn't deserve her scorn or indifference. If you can't like the main character you can't cheer for her or be hopeful in her journey. In the end she went out the way she lived her life, thinking of no one but herself. I think it's incredibly easy to understand why so many people disliked this book.

Kristen Look, it's weird for me to defend this novel because I thought it was maybe a solid three stars, at best. And I can see why someone wouldn't get into it (now, personally I reserve my one star ratings only for very special pieces of shit and I think this deserves at least two, but that's all a matter of taste) I'm not saying everyone who gives it one star is a asshole, clearly Selina here is nice girl who just didn't like it and that's cool. Me, I relate to Edna because if I had two kids I 'd drown myself too.

Josh on the other hand is clearly an asshole. To say you have to personally like a charterer to enjoy a book is retarded. Not getting into it is one thing, but if a character affects you enough to make you hate them, well then that's something right there and is deserving of a second star.
Edna's behavior in the second half of the novel is simply the polar opposite of the first, the fact that you fail to recognize that Josh and you think she deserves to be called a 'trollop' because she doesn't sacrifice herself for her children really only proves Chopin's point, which clearly you missed entirely, but whatever I'm not going to explain the novel to you if your too stupid to understand it. You probably just hate women, and the gays. I bet your just afraid your wife (who I imagine is a child bride introduced to you by Warren Jeffs . . . Josh you sick fuck) might read this and see she has options, like drowning herself in the ocean, which I would recommend.
Go home and beat your wife Josh.

message 15: by Josh (new) - rated it 1 star

Josh Firstly Kristen, where have you been? What have you seen? I have seen people who've abandoned their families by simply leaving them or killing themselves. People like that and the emotionally scarred children they leave behind constitute an enormous percentage of the nation's prison population. It happens so much more often then you could even guess. Could you cope with repercussions of a parent's suicide? One who killed themselves because of you? Could you honestly carry that burden through the rest of your life? These are real things that happen, things that people do in real life. To imagine glorifying that, making it heroic, or brave? That is abhorrent.

Secondly, the sweeping accusations you make are laughable at best. I would guess you're a maladjusted woman who spent (or is spending) her developing years either afraid to speak out and seize the anonymity of the internet as the perfect opportunity to do so, or you spend so much time speaking out that the world has just tuned you out.

Lastly, books (and by extension book discussions) are meant to be enjoyable. Why would you take an admittedly scathing review of a book as a personal offense and lash out so vehemently? Make points about the book to form a valid argument, not points about people you never have and likely never will meet.

message 16: by Sabrina (new)

Sabrina Wow Kristen, you are telling someone to go home and beat their wife and you are calling HIM a sick fuck? What is wrong with you!! Your post is repulsive! This site is meant to share how we felt about books that we've read which Josh and everyone else on here HAS THE RIGHT TO DO!! If you don't agree with it than you can talk about how you felt but you don't need to go attacking people. I personally agree with Josh in that it was selfish of Edna to kill herself as a way out without considering at least her children who she was harshly leaving behind. Calm down, take your medication, and try not to load your gun the next time someone wants to leave a comment about their opinion on here you crazy bitch!

message 17: by Kristen (last edited Sep 01, 2011 05:03PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Kristen Josh, I would imagine most people you know kill themselves or run away.
And no the book is not real, it's fiction dumb ass. If you honestly think Chopin was glorifying suicide, or suggesting that all mothers should drown themselves in the interest of women's liberation you're a fucking moron. Edna's (what you call) "selfishness" is simply a mirror of the self-sacrificing expectation of women at the time, Chopin isn't advocating either, she's clearly illustrating the dangers of both. The fact that you and so many others are so enraged at her individual "selfishness" but don't even recognize inherent selfishness of a society that demands women sacrifice themselves for others (and the fact that you think Edan deserves to be scorned as a "trollop" for having sex with two men her entire life) really just underscores Chopin argument, that we've become so condition to sexism we don't even recognize it . . . yet how enraged we are when we see it's opposite. Jesus, it's not that complicated, which is why 9th grade lit classes read this shit, only a moron would think Chopin is actually glorifying suicide, if you think that then you're even stupider than Esteban and he's a low-functioning retard.

Wow, Sabina. Did you actually make a goodreads account just to say that? I'd guess you're an idiot sock puppet but sock puppets are usually far more clever.

message 18: by Paquita Maria (last edited Sep 01, 2011 06:35PM) (new) - added it

Paquita Maria Sanchez I didn't want to get into this since I've never even read this book, but Sabrina: your arguments would seem a lot more valid if you weren't so painfully clearly a) Josh's girlfriend/wife, b) Josh's good friend or even c) Josh himself who, whichever way it is, just created "your" account today in order to back him up in this particular thread. This seems insultingly obvious.

Further, do you ("guys?") not see the hypocrisy behind what you are saying? You are so appalled by Kristen's post that you want to make sure that, to use your combined words, that crazy, medicated, social outcast bitch doesn't go around making assumptions about people? You are championing for Josh's right to express his own opinion while inadvertently claiming that Kristen does not have a right to an opinion on his opinion? Or, wait, is she allowed it, but just not allowed to express it?

"The sweeping accusations you make are laughable at best."

Personally, Kristen's original response to Josh did make me tense up a bit and say "oh, dayuuuum" to myself as I read it. Then again, people get pretty emotional when they talk about such personal social issues, added to which Kristen has a very strange sense of dark, dead-pan humor. All the same, if you don't want someone to continue being nasty with you, then respond to their nastiness by forming a calm, logical rebuttal rather than chiding them using the very same means you supposedly find so despicable.

What a mess.

Paquita Maria Sanchez Apparently we were posting at the same time. Woops!

Kristen Paquita Maria wrote: Personally, Kristen's original response to Josh did make me tense up a bit and say "oh, dayuuuum" to myself as I read it."

Well, I thought it was funny. ;-P

Paquita Maria Sanchez Oh, I'm not saying it wasn't (it was). I just imagined myself on the receiving end of that comment, and it made my discomfort muscle twitch like curraaayzay.

message 22: by Kristen (last edited Sep 01, 2011 05:34PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Kristen Well, at least we can all agree that is was pretty awesome when I called Esteban a low-functioning retard, right?

Paquita Maria Sanchez Ha! More funnies! Then again, I'm a sick fuck.

message 24: by Leo (last edited Sep 01, 2011 05:39PM) (new)

Leo Horovitz Oh shit, I need to hang around in these Goodreads comment threads more often! I haven't even read this book and, hence, can't relate to the things you say about it and each others' reviews of it, but this is fun to read! Atheist Jesus (as I've been labeled elsewhere by Kristen for some reason, so I assume she's referring to me above) says: Fight! Fight! No turning the other cheek now!

message 25: by Kristen (last edited Sep 01, 2011 06:05PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Kristen Dude, you're supposed to be smiting my enemies not encouraging them.

Jeez, why do I even bother to pray to you?

Paquita Maria Sanchez Goodreads can be a cage match to the death sometimes. I've been trying to stay on the side of the funny threads and avoid nasty arguments lately, since getting barked at by strangers fucks with my chakras or chi or whatever like too much booze does. Guess I fell off the wagon today.

Kristen I prefer to think of it as 'Goodreads Theater', which makes me some type of artist.

message 28: by Leo (new)

Leo Horovitz Kristen wrote: "Dude, you're supposed to be smiting my enemies not encouraging them.

Jeez, why do I even bother to pray to you?"

I just like to pit different groups against each other in order to watch and laugh at the ensuing chaos and mayhem, just like the non-atheist Jesus!

Paquita Maria Sanchez I think we're getting the silent treatment, guys.

Kristen Yeah, because you just know Esteban saw me call him a retard.

And Damn You Atheist Jesus! What the fuck did I slaughter all those goats for then?

message 31: by Leo (new)

Leo Horovitz Kristen wrote: "Yeah, because you just know Esteban saw me call him a retard.

And Damn You Atheist Jesus! What the fuck did I slaughter all those goats for then?"

For fun and pleasure perhaps? Don't tell me you didn't find slaughtering helpless animals at least a little bit arousing?

message 32: by Paquita Maria (last edited Sep 02, 2011 02:26AM) (new) - added it

Paquita Maria Sanchez She is a crazy, medicated bitch, a socially unacceptable mess of spite and silence and too-loudness, added to which she's a baby-killing feminazi. Animal slaughter seems par for the course, frankly. I bet she's in a coven that burns images of cute baby animals in effigy and reads passages from Kate Chopin and the Scum Manifesto while engaging in racy lesbian orgies conducted in rivers of goats blood. Then they drink the Kool-Aid and abandon all their children. The End.

message 33: by Leo (last edited Sep 02, 2011 02:31AM) (new)

Leo Horovitz Paquita Maria wrote: "She is a crazy, medicated bitch, a socially unacceptable mess of spite and silence and too-loudness, added to which she's a baby-killing feminazi. Animal slaughter seems par for the course, frankly..."

Seems like my kind of person! Atheist Jesus approves!

message 34: by Miriam (new)

Miriam Way to make killing babies and cute widdle animals sound good, Paquita! I only say things like that when I want to not be asked to baby sit.

message 35: by Eh?Eh! (new)

Eh?Eh! Kristen wrote: "What the fuck did I slaughter all those goats for then?"

How can you sacrifice these! You monsters!!!

message 36: by Leo (last edited Sep 02, 2011 08:37AM) (new)

Leo Horovitz Eh?Eh! wrote: "Kristen wrote: "What the fuck did I slaughter all those goats for then?"

How can you sacrifice these! You monsters!!!


Yeah! Those don't look tasty enough to eat! Probably not enough genetic modification and beatings...

message 37: by Miriam (new)

Miriam Is that first picture in your new backyard, Eh? Baby goats are cuter and more environmental than lawnmowers!

message 38: by Eh?Eh! (new)

Eh?Eh! The kids pictured above are hidden in safe locations, out of reach of atheist Jesus' long, ungodly arm.

message 39: by Kristen (last edited Sep 02, 2011 09:21AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Kristen Oh those guys are adorable eh! I milked a goat once. True Story.

But whatever I only slaughtered non-cute goats, and I only did it to appease Atheist Jesus so that he would smite my enemy Ben Harrison, who deserves to be smote for killing all those small animals, but he did it for sick tactile pleasure of crushing helpless animals in his bare hands whereas I did it for religious reasons, so you see how that's completely different.

Kristi, that sounds like an awesome weekend!

message 40: by Eh?Eh! (new)

Eh?Eh! I've tried milking a goat before. I ended up squeezing its teats improperly and not much milk came out. Yes, I pleasured a goat. It's a recognized form of worship in the Church of Atheist Jesus.

Kristen Um, that probably wasn't a teat then.

Paquita Maria Sanchez Eh?Eh! wrote: "Yes, I pleasured a goat. It's a recognized form of worship in the Church of Atheist Jesus."

I'm going to make you something with this quote and your face on it. Maybe a cross-stitched throw pillow? A deck of playing cards? One of those dolls where you pull the string and it talks?

message 43: by Eh?Eh! (new)

Eh?Eh! Hah! I would treasure it in whatever form you give it! Until I burn it as an offering.

Paquita Maria Sanchez How about a paper doll set? I could do that. Included: karate gi, business suit, and milking overalls with dusty brown farmer boots.

message 45: by Eh?Eh! (new)

Eh?Eh! Make me these things you speak of. Right now. Now!

message 46: by Miriam (new)

Miriam Time to curry me some lamb!

message 48: by Eh?Eh! (new)

Eh?Eh! I can make an eeriely accurate sound like a goat. One of my talents.

message 49: by Esteban (new)

Esteban del Mal Cunts.

message 50: by Esteban (new)

Esteban del Mal FYI: That protagonist IS selfish! What kind of parent offs just THEMSELF? The fuck?

(I wanted to type "shellfish" up there; it's been a long day and Atheist Jesus made me tense up for a minute...then I masturbated to his picture while thinking about infanticide.)

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