Realistic Novel Study, Part 7
Edna had intended to be indifferent and as reserved as he when she met him; she had reached the determination by a laborious train of reasoning, incident to one of her despondent moods. But her resolve melted when she saw him before designing Providence had led him into her path.
Which of the following ideas is further developed by Edna’s inability to refuse Robert?
Edna began to feel uneasy. She was seized with a vague dread. Her own like experiences seemed far away, unreal, and only half remembered. She recalled faintly an ecstasy of pain, the heavy odor of chloroform, a stupor which had deadened sensation, and an awakening to find a little new life to which she had given being, added to the great unnumbered multitude of souls that come and go.
Which idea is related to the reader through Edna’s revelation about her childbirth experiences?
She could picture at that moment no greater bliss on earth than possession of the beloved one. His expression of love had already given him to her in part. When she thought that he was there at hand, waiting for her, she grew numb with the intoxication of expectancy.
Which theme is explored in the excerpt?
Robert was not waiting for her in the little parlor. He was nowhere at hand. The house was empty. But he had scrawled on a piece of paper that lay in the lamplight:
“I love you. Good-by—because I love you.”
What significant idea, presented throughout the novel, does Robert’s final departure and note highlight?
“The trouble is,” sighed the Doctor, grasping her meaning intuitively, “that youth is given up to illusions. It seems to be a provision of Nature; a decoy to secure mothers for the race. And Nature takes no account of moral consequences, of arbitrary conditions which we create, and which we feel obliged to maintain at any cost.”
What larger idea is the doctor referring to when he says that nature takes no account of moral consequences?
I suppose this is what you would call unwomanly; but I have got into a habit of expressing myself. It doesn’t matter to me, and you may think me unwomanly if you like.
Which idea is Edna expressing?
A letter also came from her husband, saying he hoped to be back early in March, and then they would get ready for that journey abroad which he had promised her so long, which he felt now fully able to afford; he felt able to travel as people should, without any thought of small economies—thanks to his recent speculations in Wall Street.
What theme is expressed in the letter from Edna’s husband?
The children appeared before her like antagonists who had overcome her; who had overpowered and sought to drag her into the soul’s slavery for the rest of her days. But she knew a way to elude them.
Which of Edna’s ideas about motherhood does the excerpt convey?
How strange and awful it seemed to stand naked under the sky! how delicious! She felt like some new-born creature, opening its eyes in a familiar world that it had never known.
Which best describes the thematic significance of the excerpt?
“Perhaps—no, I am not going. I’m not going to be forced into doing things. I don’t want to go abroad. I want to be let alone. Nobody has any right—except children, perhaps—and even then, it seems to me—or it did seem—” She felt that her speech was voicing the incoherency of her thoughts, and stopped abruptly.
What does the excerpt suggest about Edna?