Symbols in a Doll's House Essay

968 Words4 Pages
Nora's fancy dress costume Torvald chooses Nora's fancy dress costume, a Neapolitan fisher-girl's dress that he had made for her in Capri. In effect, she is wearing it for him: the sight of her dancing in it throws him into a state of erotic fascination. This reinforces the idea that it is Nora's superficial and transient qualities, such as her beauty, that Torvald most appreciates. It is significant that when the Nurse first brings out the dress (Act 2), Nora notices that it is torn and is tempted to rip it to shreds. This may be symbolic of the flawed state of her marriage and of her feelings about it. Mrs Linde, who is less impetuous and more mature than Nora, suggests repairing it, and it is Mrs Linde who decides that Nora and…show more content…
The mythology of tarantism suggests that she is dancing in order to rid herself of a deadly poison. Depending on how we wish to interpret this symbolism, the poison may be the threat posed by Krogstad's revelations, or the poison of deception and hypocrisy that characterizes the Helmer marriage. Light Light is most often used to symbolize Nora's state of awareness. After Torvald claims to be man enough to take everything upon himself (Act 2) and while she is talking to Dr Rank, the light begins to grow dark. This symbolism refers to two processes. First, Nora is using her sexual attractiveness to manipulate the dying Dr Rank into giving her money to pay off her loan. When Dr Rank confesses his love for her, she is shocked out of her game. She brings in a lamp, telling Dr Rank that he must feel ashamed of himself now that the lamp has come. Light also appears to symbolize hope and spiritual redemption when Dr Rank is talking in code to Nora about his coming death (Act 3). He talks of death as a big black hat that will make him invisible, an image of obliteration of life. But Nora brings him a light for his cigar as she wishes him goodbye. Dr Rank loves her, and in spite of her sometimes dubious behavior towards him, she has given him understanding, compassion and acceptance. She also means at this point, it seems, to join him in death by
Get Access