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Henrik Isben's A Doll's House Essay

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Nora is a captivating character in Ibsen's A Doll's House. She swings between extremes: she is either very happy or immensely depressed, prosperous or completely desperate, wise or naive, impotent or purposeful. You can understand this range in Nora, because she staggers between the person she pretends to be and the one she someday hopes to become. Throughout the play, Nora is portrayed as subordinate to her male counterpart, Torvald. As most other men during this time, Torvald believed that women were not capable of making difficult decisions, or thinking for themselves. As the play progresses, Nora faces a life changing decision to abandon her duty as a wife and mother to find her own individuality. Even though Torvald is responsible…show more content…
You can hear his resentment towards Nora when he exclaims,”you are ill, Nora" (pg.63). She is shocked into reality and sees what a masquerade their relationship has been. She becomes aware that her father and her husband have seen her as a doll to be played with, a figure without opinion or will of her own. She also realizes that she is treating her children the same way. Her whole life has been based on illusion rather than reality.
The believability of the play hinges on your accepting Nora's sudden self-awareness. Perceiving the situation differs as she might feel that she has been a child so long she couldn't possibly grow up that quickly. Or she might feel that she is already quite wise without realizing it, and that what happens is credible.
A common reaction would be one of sadness for Torvald's loss. He's a straight-laced, proper man, who has worked his whole life to support her and their family. At first, he seems genuinely in love with Nora, even if he does tend to nag and preach a bit. But as the play progresses, you discover more disturbing parts of his character. Like anyone who doubts his own power, Torvald tries to frequently prove it. He keeps firm authority over who comes to his study and whom he converses with at work, and over everything
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