Analysis Of Women In 'a Dolls House'

1514 words - 7 pages

Women were valued very little by nineteenth century society. The treatment of these women was also extremely negative; they were stereotypical housewives, expected to stay home and fulfill domestic duties. Literature of this time embodies and mirrors social issues of women in society. Henrik Ibsen uses Nora Helmer in "A Doll's House" to portray the negative treatment of all women throughout society during the nineteenth century. In this play we see Nora begin as fragile, nieve creature and progress to an individual, independent woman.Written during the Victorian era, the controversial play featuring a female protagonist seeking individuality stirred up more controversy than any of his other ...view middle of the document...

Clement Scott describes the initial image of Nora as that of "a doll wife who revels in the thought of luxuries that can now be afforded, who is become with flirtation, and engages in childlike acts of disobedience "(TCLC 221). This inferior role from which Nora progressed is extremely important. Ibsen depicts the role of women as subordinate in order to emphasize the need to reform their role in society. Definite characteristics of the women's subordinate role in a relationship are emphasized through Nora's contradicting actions. Her infatuation with luxuries such as expensive Christmas gifts contradicts her resourcefulness in scrounging and buying cheap clothing. Her defiance of Torvald by eating forbidden Macaroons contradicts the submission of her opinions, including the decision of which dance outfit to wear, to her husband. Lastly, Nora's flirtatious nature contradicts her devotion to her husband. These occurrences emphasize the facets of a relationship in which women play a dependent role: finance, power, and love. Ibsen attracts our attention to these examples to highlight the overall subordinate role that a woman plays compared to that of her husband. The two sides of Nora contrast each other greatly and accentuate the fact that she is lacking in independence of will. The mere fact that Nora's well-intentioned action is considered illegal reflects woman's subordinate position in society; but it is her actions that provide the insight to this position. It can be suggested that women have the power to choose which rules to follow at home, but not in the business world, thus again indicating her subordinateness.This leads me to my next position that Nora fulfills through her journey to independence. The character trait of naivety is expressed when she doesn't believe that she has done anything wrong. Nora does not at first realize that the rules outside the household apply to her. This is evident in Nora's meeting with Krogstad regarding her borrowed money. In her opinion it was no crime for a woman to do everything possible to save her husband's life. She also believes that her act will be overlooked because of her desperate situation. She fails to see that the law does not take into account the motivation behind her forgery. William Archer submits that this meeting with Krogstad was her first confrontation with the reality of a "lawful society" and she deals with it by attempting to distract herself with her Christmas decorations (231). Thus her first encounter with rules outside of her "doll's house" results in the realization of her naivety and inexperience with the real world due to her subordinate role in society. The character of Nora is not only important in describing to role of women, but also in emphasizing the impact of this role on a woman. Nora's child-like manner, evident through her minor acts of disobedience and lack of responsibility compiled with her lack of sophistication further emphasize the subordinate role of woman....

Other Essays On Analysis Of Women In 'A Dolls House'

An analysis of Chinua Achebe's silencing of women in the novel Things Fall Apart - English - Essay

1033 words - 5 pages . It conforms to the pattern of deeming women less than men. By referring to her as a man’s possession she is belittled and put in the position of something to be owned. It can be argued that this specific characterization choice suggests that her entire existence is dependent on the role she plays when connected to the lives of these men. It is as if, when being the first woman to marry Okonkwo, the rest of her life would be solely centered around

An Analysis Of The Women In "Heart Of Darkness" By Joseph Conrad

473 words - 2 pages Heart of DarknessA striking contrast in the story "Heart of Darkness" by Joseph Conrad is the differences between the two women that Kurtz is involved with. His intended, a white woman who waits faithfully for him in Europe, and his fiery African mistress help to reinforce the themes and ideas in the story.The two main female characters can be seen as symbols of the contrast between light and darkness. Kurtz's mistress is "savage and superb

Patriarchal Authority in 'A Doll's House' - Millais School, Horsham - Essay

1770 words - 8 pages - "Tell me, is it really true that you did not love your husband? Why did you marry him?” proving further that she believes marriage something to be done when only in love - something she believes she has with Torvald. Furthermore, when telling Mrs Linde of the time due to come when her debts have been paid, she states; ‘Free. To be free, absolutely free. To spend time playing with the children. To have a clean, beautiful house, the way Torvald likes

Journeys Involve Overcoming Obstacles In 'Life As A House'. Discuss. - Essay On 'Life As A House' Film - Essay

689 words - 3 pages ‘Life As A House’- Essay The act of self- reflection is an essential aspect of journeys. Provide extensive reasoning regarding whether you agree or oppose this concept utilising the text ‘Life As A House’. Journeys Involve Overcoming Obstacles. Discuss the statement in relation to your text and one other text selected. The prevalence of the overcoming of obstacles presented in the trials and tribulations of spiritual, physical and mental

the influences of the women in scouts life - to kill a mockingbird - english - essay

501 words - 3 pages affects her view on the trial of Tom Robinson. Aside from Calpurnia, Scout has the most respect for Miss Maudie among the other women mentioned in the book. She’s a strong woman and teaches Scout to be humble and not materialistic. She also teaches Scout not to tolerate hypocrisy. At the tea party Aunt Alexandra hosted in the Finch house, Mrs Merriweather praises Reverend J. Grimes for helping people in africa but later criticises Atticus for

stereotypes of women in society - leadership - essay

1085 words - 5 pages have to look like in the Victoria Secret commercials and many other advertisements that have to do not only with a women body shape but with the way that they have to act. When companies advertise their products, most of the time, they advertise women as skinny, tall and with some kind of facial features, like color eyes and small nose. Also, most of the models wear makeup and are dressed some kind of way. This mentality that society has created

This Essay Is A Brief History Of Rattle And Snap Plantation In Mt. Pleasant, TN. Describes Owners (Past And Present) And Other Information On The House

1726 words - 7 pages The history of Rattle and Snap dates back to just after the Revolutionary War. Back then, the U.S. Government did not have the money to pay its soldiers, so they issued land grants. One of those soldiers was Lt. Colonel William Polk. William was very good friends with the Governor of North Carolina, the governor was his brother-in-law.One day, William and the governor got involved in a gambling game. The governor was losing very badly, and in

The Role Of Women In Medea

1220 words - 5 pages To another woman's bed.It often happens. Don't be hurt. God will be your friend in this.You must not waste away Grieving too much for him who shared your bed." (Medea 153-158) The truth of the matter is that in Athenian society during this time it was acceptable for men to take new wives on a whim, and getting mad and upset were the only choice, or result of the lack of choice, women had. "We women are the most unfortunate creatures." (Medea 229

Powerlessness and vulnerability in Once in a House on Fire - English - Essay

866 words - 4 pages at the time of the novel was dismissive. Women would often call the police regarding domestic violence. However, when the police eventually arrived, the women would send them away, claiming nothing was wrong. The police would obey this and leave, so Lorraine would be left completely helpless, as she had no help in another country. Ashworth also presents Peter as a vulnerable character in the extract, angered by his own actions. When attempting to

Representations and social criticism in Ibsen's a Doll's House - Literature - Essay

1312 words - 6 pages characterisation. With this Ibsen critiques and highlights the injustices plaguing his society, advocating for the equal rights and treatment of men and women, not just in the eyes of the law but throughout society. In the case of Ibsen’s, A Doll’s House, both the world of the play and the world the author lived in are the same. He wrote A Doll’s House in Norway in 1879, and the play presumably took place sometime in the very same decade. The play, set in an

Edgar Allen Poe's View Of Death In "The Fall Of The House Of Usher"

1836 words - 8 pages characteristics of a person or an object are linked to one theme. Death was the main theme of 'The Fall of the House of Usher'. Poe scorned the use of symbolism in readings. 'He said that as soon as the reader became preoccupied with meaning, the emotional effect was lost...on the other hand he believed that short stories should have 'undercurrents of meaning'' ('The Fall of the House of Usher'- Analysis, 4). These statements are contradictory to

Similar Papers

Purple Hibiscus And Dolls House Comparison A Level Essay

2481 words - 10 pages authors also focus on the role of the dominant male in both novels, these are Torvald in A Doll's House and Papa (Eugene) in Purple Hibiscus. Ibsen and Adichie show the different ways in which dominance can be portrayed and the similar impact it can have on family life.  The women in both A Doll's House and Purple Hibiscus appear to have very similar roles, that are in line with the societal standards of the time. In the play A Doll's House, Ibsen

This Is An Essay Regarding The Theme Of Symbolism In Rosario Ferre's Work The Youngest Doll. The Specific Theme Is The Use Of Dolls As A Representation Of Women

617 words - 3 pages Rosario Ferré uses dolls in her writing to symbolize the methods in which society holds down women in Puerto Rico as well as throughout the world. In "The Youngest Doll," Ferré sets the precedent that dolls are equal to the maiden aunt's nieces, by stating, "The aunt had continued to increase the size of the dolls so that the height and other measurements conformed to those of each of the girls (Ferré 483)." The methods in

A Raisin In The Sun Analysis Of Characters Black Women Literature Character Analysis

1137 words - 5 pages comes in, Mama disappears and leaves the family pondering what she is doing with the money. She later comes back and tells the family that she put a down payment on a house, a house in a white neighborhood that was a great deal. Shortly after, a man name Linder comes to talk to the family, “I am sure you people must be aware of some of the incidents which have happened in various parts of the city when colored people have moved into certain

Performance Analysis Of Guys And Dolls Jackson University/Acting 1 Performance Analysis

1027 words - 5 pages 2 Rebecca Weaver Dr. Michael Boynton DR 241 April 15, 2018 A Golden Age Musical: JSU’s 2018 Production of Guys and Dolls What’s your tale, nightingale? Jacksonville State University’s production of Frank Loesser’s renowned musical, Guys and Dolls, seems to tell a tale of life in the big apple during the 1950’s. This production was performed at the Carlton Ward Theatre, February 23-25, and March 2-4 of 2018. I had the tremendous privilege of