Although the overarching metaphor of The Awakening is the sea, it cannot be said that Edna’s victory lies in her death by drowning; instead, it lies in what she has made of her life. The novel tracks the evolution of her will. The will is the element of human nature that German philosopher Arthur Schopenhauer calls the “thing-initself,” that which strives successfully against those constraints imposed by society. Edna desires to break through the chains of convention and constraint as she moves toward new freedoms—physical, intellectual, and moral. Edna’s victory lies within her ungrounded will, which in turn, wills itself to be free. My essay demonstrates that at the end of the novel it is Edna’s body that succumbs to exhaustion and eventual death, but not her will. Her will has steadily moved toward indomitable triumph.