Hedda Gabler's Character Analysis Essays

Decent Essays

Hedda Is Not a Housewife The reflection of women in literature during the late eighteen-hundreds often features a submissive and less complex character than the usual male counterpart, however Henrik Ibsen’s Hedda Gabler features a women who confines herself to the conformities that women were to endure during that time period but separates herself from other female characters by using her intelligence and overall deviousness to manipulate the men in her life and take a dominant presence throughout the play. Hedda challenges the normal female identity of the time period by leaving the stereotype of the “quiet, subservient housewife” through her snide and condescending remarks as well as her overall spoiled aristocratic demeanor. …show more content…

After some light conversation, Hedda is quick to insult Aunt Julia’s bonnet. “Hedda: (pointing). Look there! She has left her old bonnet lying about on a chair…. Just fancy if anyone should come in and see it” (Ibsen pg. 9). The standard for a proper housewife is to be accommodating and friendly to guests of her home. The husband in this case would more than likely enact some aggression towards his wife who spoke unkindly to a guest, however Hedda differs herself from the normal housewife this way by disregarding the customs for treating other people in her home. This also shows the lack of respect towards her own husband, Mr. Tesman, for she treats his own family members with little regard. Hedda displays little respect towards her husband mainly because he is not able to provide for her enough to maintain the standard of living which she is used to. Mr. Tesman bought Hedda a brand new home just to woo her yet she is displeased and disinterested in her residence reciting that she only mentioned she would like to live there due to an awkward night where neither could think of anything to say, so she just decided to comment on a villa which they happened to be walking by. (Ibsen pg. 31). Hedda makes this comment to judge Brack with whom Mr. Tesman is closely affiliated. Comments like these are not only an example of Hedda’s rudeness but also delve into a much deeper darker aspect of the character of Hedda

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