Kate Chopin


Born: 8 February 1851
Died: 22 August 1904 (cerebral hemorrhage)
Birthplace: St. Louis, Missouri
Best known as: Author of The Awakening

Name at birth: Katherine O'Flaherty

Kate Chopin was an American novelist and short-story writer best known for her startling 1899 novel, The Awakening. Born in St. Louis, she moved to New Orleans after marrying Oscar Chopin in 1870. Less than a decade later Oscar's cotton business fell on hard times and they moved to his family's plantation in the Natchitoches Parish of northwestern Louisiana. Oscar died in 1882 and Kate was suddenly a young widow with six children. She turned to writing and published her first poem in 1889. The Awakening, considered Chopin's masterpiece, was subject to harsh criticism at the time for its frank approach to sexual themes. It was rediscovered in the 1960s and has since become a standard of American literature, appreciated for its sophistication and artistry. Chopin's short stories of Cajun and Creole life are collected in Bayou Folk (1894) and A Night in Acadie (1897), and include "Desiree's Baby," "The Story of an Hour" and "The Storm."

Extra credit: Some biographers cite 1850 as Chopin's birth year.

Copyright © 1998-2015 by Who2?, LLC. All rights reserved.

More on Kate Chopin from Fact Monster:

  • Kate O'Flaherty Chopin - Chopin, Kate O'Flaherty Chopin, Kate O'Flaherty , 1851–1904, American author, b. St. ...
  • Kate Chopin - Biography of Kate Chopin, Author of The Awakening
  • February 8 Birthdays: William Tecumseh Sherman - February 8 birthdays: William Tecumseh Sherman, Gary Coleman, Lana Turner, Nick Nolte, John Grisham, James Dean, Elizabeth Bishop, Jack Lemmon, Kate Chopin, Jules Verne, Dame Edith Evans, John Williams, Martin Buber
  • Selected Biographies: C - Selected biographies of well-known people and fictional characters

Information Please® Database, © 2007 Pearson Education, Inc. All rights reserved.