Henrik Ibsen: A Doll's House - Critical Analysis of the Play

Published: 2021-08-11
565 words
3 pages
5 min to read
Sewanee University of the South
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In A Dolls House, Ibsen described different characters to bring out different themes.The main characters comprise of the Nora Helmer, Torvald Helmer, and Krogstad. In case of this paper, the analysis of Noras characters is done. In the play, Nora is viewed as the chief protagonist, and she seems like a bit of a ditz. She was Tovard Helmers wife, and she seemed not to care even if her husband was calling her names-Spendthrift, Little lark and little squirrel. She is treated like a child by her husband. For instance, he denied her an opportunity to eat the macaroons, something she always does despite her high level of obedience. Initially, she seemed to be naive, playful child who lacks any experience about their home experience. However, after engaging in numerous rebellious acts, she contradicts the innocent and happiness character she initially displayed. Though the husband and the father interfered with her education, Nora has retained enough wisdom which she can easily use to confront an emergency. She is a bubble and carefree and excited about the Christmas as well as her husband's recent promotion. The usage of the animal imagery in the play depicts her high level of innocence. However, later in the play, Nora was depicted as one who is not obedient as she first displayed. For instance, Nora borrowed money secretly from Nils Krogstad and later forged her fathers signature to get money which she could use to finance her trip to Italy. Even if it was a process which was essential in saving Torvalds life, she was supposed to ask her father to help her raise the money through illegal means. It is because, it is due to the fact that Torvald later realized about the debt and failed to forgive her about the act, a process which made her leave her home, her husband in the pursuit for a sense of self and learn more about the world and the things in it. For instance, her husbands negative thought about the debt can be depicted in the quote when Torvald mentioned that; Nora! Just like a woman. Seriously though, Nora, you know what I think about these things. No debts! Never borrow! There is something always inhibited, something unpleasant, about a home built on credit and borrowed money. Besides, she even indulges in doing odd jobs and skims money to secretly pay back the debts. She even committed different fraud to save her husband, a process which made Nora be tenacious and daring. She is one who values love as compared to the law and good reputation. Thus, it canbe depict the reason as to why her husband was not ready to forgive her until his reputation is restored.

At the end of the play, Nora is depicted as one who has gained a lot of insight into the world after leaving her society and home. Her image was embittered yet a sophisticated, intelligent and newly empowered woman who can boldly escape infantilizing clutches of her old life. It thus shows that she has achieved the pursuit of identity and now can identify her worth in the society. She could not be looked down upon by her husband and the other people in the society. She now understands the law and the meaning of loving and be loved, a mentality which have given her a high level of intelligence.


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