A Doll’s House, by Henrik Ibsen Essay

Identifying a lie can at times prove quite troublesome. Some individuals may occasionally claim to spot deception simply by noticing the behavior of someone accused. This gut feeling is by no standards definite, and could be in fact mistaken. On the on other hand, one possible way to expose a lie concerns the revealing of an idea that is most assuredly true, such as with an article that has been written down. Documents usually are quite accurate, for once an idea is put on paper it becomes quite hard to retract. In effect written words relate to the truth, and if understood by the viewer they may expose the lies of those around him. Taking this a step further involves putting truthful, paper into the hands of someone else, perhaps in the form of a letter or note via the post office. In his drama A Doll House Ibsen included three articles of mail to symbolize the truth, and thereby to reveal some of the lies perpetrated by Nora.

The first paper of importance is the letter written by Krogstad toward the end of Act two explaining the conditions of his blackmail. This letter contains all the evidence incriminating Nora of her appalling forgery crime. Krogstad makes sure to base his accusation on factual information, confirmed by Nora herself, so his letter is one-hundred percent correct. Since she shows no desire to reveal any part of her history, the letter represents the only means through which the real actions of Nora are set to be revealed. Therefore as this letter sits ominously in the mailbox it symbolizes the truth surrounding Nora’s past. Although, while this letter is a embodiment of the veracity concerning Nora’s debts, Ibsen specifically included it to reveal two kinds of deception enacted by her. Her first …

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…t him. However the true character of Torvald seems nothing like the imagined one of Nora, for he gives in to the demands of Krogstad very quickly upon assessing the situation. She originally experiences denial, because she forced herself to believe that Torvald will come to her rescue. The third piece of mail shows Nora the truth about her husband, and makes her realize how he mistreats her. Therefore, it reveals the lie that she tricked herself into believing, that Torvald is not the man she wanted to believe he was. In fact, it could be argued that Nora never in fact loved Torvald at all, and any love expressed in the marriage was a lie in itself. In that case the note also reveals the facade put on during their marriage. Ibsen used the letter symbolizing the true nature of Nora’s husband to point out the lie that she choose to believe about their relationship.

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