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A Doll's House - Essay Example

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Initially, she is unable to understand the true nature of her relationship with her husband. However, with the passage of time and with knowledge as to how her husband…
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A Dolls House
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Teacher: A Dolls House A Doll’s House written by Henrik Ibsen shows a continuous growth in the personality of the protagonist, Nora. Initially, she is unable to understand the true nature of her relationship with her husband. However, with the passage of time and with knowledge as to how her husband regards her in actuality, she recognizes her doll like life. She is regarded as a doll and a child figure by her husband, Torvald who is more a father to her than her husband because they are not on equal terms in their marriage. Nora is trapped in a shameful condition that is her marriage with Torvald for whose happiness she suppresses her uniqueness and individuality.
Torvald deals Nora as a father figure as he calls her with different names to indicate towards her inequality in the relationship such as “little sky-lark”, “little squirrel”, “little spendthrift been”, “little pet”, “little one”, little Nora”, “little song-bird” and many more. In every word used for Nora, little is used necessarily and indicates towards the fact that Nora is considered as a child like character who needs training and is in no way equal to her husband. Nora never minds such names and considers her a playful character for her husband’s pleasure and is always ready to amuse him. She acts like her husband’s puppet. She is like a kid who wants her elders to be happy with her.
Nora takes some loan for the life of her husband and conceals this from him and when Torvald knows about her doing, he loses his temper. Torvald doesn’t realize that whatever Nora has done was for his own safety. He only sees his reputation and social status. He is unable to realize Nora’s love for him. He only blames her for injuring his reputation. At seeing the reaction of Torvald after reading the letter, Nora says:
“…now, I’m really beginning to understand.” (Ibsen 75)
Nora has an increase in her knowledge related to her husband and herself. Here an increase in knowledge can be sensed. She knows that her condition is shameful in her marriage. Nora is able to see the true nature of Torvald by his reaction towards Nora’s doing. He calls her a “hypocrite, a liar, worse than that, a criminal” (Ibsen 75). Torvald’s abusive attitude towards Nora makes her understand her status as an individual in her household. She informs Torvald,
“I have been your doll wife, just as at home I was Daddy’s doll child.” (Ibsen 80)
She identifies her existence as a doll as she has no recognition of her own. She comes to know that she is unable to acquire her right as an individual by her husband and her father who are both highly domineering and authoritative. At the end when she wants to leave the house in order to recognize her true self, Torvald is so desperate to stop her and continue her job of being his doll that he begs her not to leave and informs her about a lot of social pressures such as her being wife and a mother. However, Nora is not ready to take over her role of the doll again as she realizes her individuality and uniqueness and wants to explore more about her by giving her some time of her own. She is not ready to give sacrifices for anyone whether it is Torvald or her children.
Nora transformed from being a mere doll to an individual by understanding the true nature of her relationship with her husband. Every individual has value and should lead life according to her life according to her personality, Nora realizes this after gaining knowledge about her shameful marriage relationship with her husband in which, her individuality is suppressed. The ending is a reaffirmation of value of life as Nora is able to know her value and also is able to make her husband know about her worth as an individual. Life is essential for her and by being a doll, she was without any life.
Works Cited
Ibsen, Henrik. A Doll’s House. New York: Oxford University Press, 1991. Read More
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