Art & Identity in New Orleans

HNRS 109 Spring '18

Edna, Blanche, Binx, and Kate

While reading The Awakening and A Streetcar Named Desire, I thought that it was very evident that the main characters suffered from depression or another mental illness. Edna was very sure of what she wanted in life, but she knew she could never have it, and this resulted in her ending her life. Blanche was never aware of her illness or what she was doing to the people around her. She didn’t even know what was going on when she was taken away by the Doctor.

In The Moviegoer, Binx reaches a point in his life where he wants to find out who he is, kind of like how Edna did. But Binx is happy with how his life is going and how it might turn out; he doesn’t have any worries. Edna is different in that sense; she is not happy and she can’t live the life she wants because she has people and different circumstances that are preventing her from doing so.

With Kate, I can see Blanche and Edna in her. Kate is controlled a lot in the story, like how Edna and Blanche were. Blanche was controlled in a way by Stanley because he always forced her into things and was very forceful with his actions towards her. In my opinion, I feel like Edna was being controlled by herself, as if she knew that she wanted different things in her life, but she also knew that she couldn’t allow herself to obtain those things. Kate has depression like Edna did, but she doesn’t succumb to the same outlook that Edna did with taking her own life.

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