A Doll’s House is a short play by Henrik Ibsen. The plot revolves around a married woman, Nora Helmer, and how she borrowed money to save her husband, Torvald Helmer’s life when he was very ill. On a day before Christmas, Linde, Nora’s high-school friend and widow, visits as she is hoping to find a job. Nora tells Linde of what she has done as proof that she has been through rough times and still is until now because her husband is assigned bank director.
Krogstad, the man that lend the money to Nora, is about to get fired by Torvald because of his infamous reputation at the bank. This causes him to threaten Nora and expose her secret to her husband unless he gets his job back. Nora tries many times to convince Torvald not to fire him but Torvald thinks of her as his doll and nothing else making him not taking her words into consideration. when Krogstad gets fired, he leaves Torvald a letter explaining everything to him. Furious by the letter, Torvald verbally assaults Nora making her realize that he does not deserve her and leaves. A Doll’s House is a three-act play the discusses the issues of a married woman in a male-dominated world.
The author created this play in a way to show how men in the 18th century used to think of women as nothing but doll for their personal pleasures and how they only care about their reputation and wealth. This play was very controversial at its time because it illustrates the battle of the sexes dealing with women’s rights and wealth. At first sight, the play’s major theme is about women’s role in society. He illustrates the male dominance in the first few lines when Torvald calls Nora his squirrel.
The name squirrel represents that Torvald, Nora is nothing but this small creature that is very cheeky and dumb. Therefore, one can notice that Torvald is the dominant one while Nora is submissive to her husband. This gender role stereotypes are seen throughout the entire play.
Even when Nora tries to show her dominance, Torvald is seen having the upper hand in each situation. An example for that would be when Nora tries to seduce Torvald to give her more money to buy herself a present, but Torvald replies by calling her little person. Another example would be at the end of act 1, when Krogstad threatens Nora and she tries to beg Torvald to keep Krogstad. There Torvald state,Torvald here demolishes Nora to the point where he tells her to do nothing and just sing. In other words, Torvald is warning Nora not to use her brain but keep quiet and stay away from men’s business. Even though Nora is determined to take control and become a decision maker, she is failing to do so due to Torvald’s belittling tone. The author demonstrates the social clash of social roles and decides to take a feminist point of view towards the end. When Nora is faced with the reality of her lover, she falls out of love for him.
Seeking the freedom that she has always longed for, Nora decides to abolishes the social construct that has been imposed on her and take charge of her own destiny and walk out on her husband and family making her a dynamic character. A thirst for cash influences all the significant characters in the play. The play starts off by uncovering that Torvald has been offered a director’s position at the bank meaning that his paychecks and income is going to increase.
Be that as it may, he still punishes Nora for her excessive spending and stating that they should be aware of their spending. The money also plays an important role in showing domestication of one character to the other. For example, in the introduction of the play, Torvald’s capacity to manage the amount Nora spends on Christmas presents demonstrates his control over her. Another way character that is influenced by money is Mrs. Linde.
Because her husband passed away, Mrs. Linde is in urgent need of getting money to be able to survive. However, with that being said, both Mrs. Linde and Nora cannot acquire expansive wages since they are ladies; their powerlessness to get to noteworthy measures of cash is one way that they are persecuted by the sexism of the time. Also, Krogstad is in desperate need of money as he might be losing his career at the bank.
In the start of the play, Nora is pleased with the way that she “raised” the cash for her and Torvald’s outing to Italy herself—however the obligation she owes soon turns into a wellspring of fear, fear, and disgrace. The excite of getting cash is in this manner appeared to have a drawback. Ibsen uses the bank as a representation of the money-hungry characters that formulate the entire play around wealth. In conclusion, The Doll’s House decodes the firm set of social rules and constraint that women had to face in their everyday life during the 18th century. It perfectly clarifies how women were demeaned and were thought to be nothing but domestic decorations. Ibsen portrays that using a marriage and continues to unfold the idea of whether or not love exists in such hard environments regarding women. Using metaphors to describe the tension between the different aspects of the Victorian women’s life, he paves the way for the feminist movement.
Even though he does not consider himself to be a feminist, Ibsen established to send a message to all his viewers without implying that rebel