Nearly all of Kate Chopin's her work is set in the areas around New Orleans, Grand Isle and Natchitoches, and provides a vivid window into Louisiana life near the turn of the century. Her early stories were well-received nationally and earned her literary fame as a "local colorist," even appearing in the first issue of
However, her novel The Awakening, published 1899, drew a storm of criticism for its "shocking, morbid, and vulgar" story and quickly went out of print. The novel was not resurrected until the 1950s, when participants in the growing women's movement recognized its importance. Today, The Awakening is among the most-read American novels in colleges and universities and is considered an early example of American realism.
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