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The writing life of Kate Chopin - Research Paper Example

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The Writing Life of Kate Chopin Biographical Background Kate Chopin became known to the American reading public of the early 1890s and gained national recognition as an outstanding short story artist of the local color school (Seyersted, 5). Catherine O’Flaherty, popularly known as Kate Chopin was born on February 8, 1850 on the Eight Street between Chouteau and Gratiot in St…
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The writing life of Kate Chopin

Download file to see previous pages... Kate lost two very important male figures at an early age. Victoire Verdon Charleville, her great grandmother separated from her husband, Joseph Charleville while her father died in a railroad accident during the inauguration journey of the Pacific Railroad over the Gasconade Bridge in November 1, 1855 (Toth, 9). Kate’s father was one of the founders of the Pacific Railroad and was a self-made man. Her mother was only 27 years old when Thomas O’Flaherty died at age 50 and never remarried after Mr. Flaherty’s death. Madame Charleville taught Kate about music, history, speaking French, and the need to live life clearly and fearlessly (Toth, 13). Kate O’Flaherty enrolled in the Academy of the Sacred Heart in 1855 which she attended sporadically for thirteen years with her friend Kitty Garesche. Kate also enrolled in the Academy of the Visitation in 1865. In 1868, Kate graduated from the Academy of the Sacred Heart and visited New Orleans in April 1869 (Seyersted, 23). Kate got married with Oscar Chopin on June 9, 1870 in Holy Angels Church St. Louis and spent their honeymoon in Europe from June-September 1870 (Green, 5). The couple settled in 443 Magazine St; Northeast Corner Pete and Constantinople New Orleans (now 1413 Louisiana Avenue). Kate gave birth to six children (5 boys and 1 girl) (Green, 2). Their names are Jean Baptiste, Oscar Charles, George Francis, Frederick, Felix Andrew, and Leila/Marie Laiza. In December 10, 1882, Oscar Chopin died from complications of swamp fever. Kate, together with her children, returned to St. Louis with her children mid-1884. Their family lived at 1125 St. Ange Avenue then at 1122. In 1888, Kate began to write seriously after the death of her mother Eliza O’Flaherty. Kate was emotionally burnt of all her losses that she found comfort in writing through the suggestions of Frederick Kolbenheyer, a physician (Walker, 51). Kate has been popular until the extreme criticism of her novel “The Awakening”. Poor health and concerns regarding family put her down. She was a member of the St. Louis Children of Solidarity and Wednesday Club. Members of the Wednesday Club praised her novel “The Awakening”. She was attending St. Louis World Fair on August 20, 1904, suffering from cerebral hemorrhage. Then on the 22nd, she died and is buried on the 24th of August in Calvary Cemetery, St. Louis. Significant Written Works Kate Chopin wrote out of emotions and experiences. She portrayed women’s desire of freedom. “Lilia’s Polka” was her first work and she wrote it for her daughter in 1888. Chopin published her first poem “If It Might Be” and first two short stories “Wiser than God” and “A Point at Issue” in 1889. “At Fault” was Kate’s first published novel in 1890 where she based it on her experience. The book received a lot of negative feedbacks because it talked about women’s alcoholism and affairs. Chopin wrote another novel, “Young Dr. Grosse” but due to several rejections from publishers, she destroyed the manuscript. One of Chopin’s famous stories was “Desiree Baby”, published by Vogue Magazine. The story described Desiree as an ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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