English Comp II
November 15, 2012
A Doll’s House
In Ibsen’s play A Doll’s House, relationships and the complexities that come with that are the main theme. Nora slowly begins to realize that she is in a marriage that is based on the illusion that she and Torvald are happy and completely in love. Their relationship, while on the surface seems happy is only that on the surface. In the play, Ibsen reveals the pretend aspects of the relationship and the damage secrets do to that relationship.
At the time this play was written a woman was expected to be content with their role as a wife and mother. Nora is not content and holds a secret that could ruin her marriage. With the news that Torvald’s life is in danger Nora borrows money to fund a trip that will save his life. She knows that Torvald would think of himself as less of a man if he knew she borrowed the money. She does it anyway. As the secret comes to light, Torvald calls her a criminal, hypocrite liar. Torvald tells her that no man would sacrifice his honor for a woman.
In conversations with her friend Christine, Nora comes to realize that she is in a loveless marriage. Nora learns that she does not even know herself and her marriage is over. They are forced to analyze their relationship. Nora begins to see herself honestly for the first time. Her fake happiness was enough for her before, but now she realizes that she has never been her own person. Everything in her life had been arranged for her by her father and now Torvald. Torvald tells her he will blame her for her helplessness and will continue to be her guide. In the past she would have consented to this but now she has gained enlightenment. She sees that their love was never real and she needs more from life. Nora is determined to leave but Torvald is desperate to keep her. For Nora it is too late, she can’t go back now.
The interactions of the characters reveal the complexity of relationships. Ibsen showed the...