Throughout the novella The Awakening as well as while reading the culture and context about this story the main word that popped out at me was freedom, or lack of freedom for the most part. It is quite clear through the reading that 19th century women were looked upon as property to own rather than a person to respect and cherish. This lack of respect and freedom is shown in chapter 1 when Edna’s husband looks at her burnt skin as a piece of property that has suffered damage, rather than his wife who could be in pain. As The Awakening progresses Edna starts to realize how she is being treated, and more importantly understands that this treatment is not acceptable. In chapter 10, Edna finds the strength to do something she had tried all summer to learn which is to swim. The photo I have chosen for this illustrated explanation is actually exactly what came to my mind while reading this chapter, a woman in the water overwhelmed with this new feeling of power and control which is symbolized through Edna’s ability to swim. This feeling of power takes over Edna and causes her to examine other areas of her relationship with her husband and even makes her start to be somewhat disobedient to him. The idea of freedom for woman plays a huge role in this story as well as the time period in which it was written.