A Doll ‘s House By Henrik Ibsen Essays

“I would never dream of doing anything you didn’t want me to,” Nora explains to Torvald as she stuffs her hidden Macaroons farther down into her pocket. These macaroons are just one of many symbols seen throughout the play, A Doll’s House by Henrik Ibsen. Symbolism is important in literature because it provides meaning to the writing beyond what is actually being said or described. Symbolism often times represents the theme of a story on the physical level i.e. objects, people, weather, and setting. A few major symbols from the play are the macaroons, Christmas tree, and the tarantella. These symbols are an important part of the play and enhance the impact and meaning of the play’s themes.

One notable symbol is the macaroons. Torvald banned Nora from eating macaroons even though she enjoys them. Although they are banned, Nora still eats macaroons while alone in the living room. Nora’s eating of the macaroons shows that she possesses a childish nature. The macaroons also can be interpreted as Nora’s disobedience and rebellion against her husband’s authority. She lies to Dr. Rank by telling him that Mrs. Linde gave them to her even though she did not need to lie to him. At the end of act two, Nora failed to convince Helmer to keep Krogstad at the bank and as a result, she asks her maid to put plenty of macaroons on her dinner plate. The macaroons are a major symbol in the play and shed light into Nora’s disturbed mental state. This symbol enhances the theme of deception where there is a gap between reality and what appears to be true in the play. Because of Nora’s lies to Torvald and Dr. Rank, she enjoys acceptance and approval by those around her while still enjoying the sweets she is not supposed to have. The symbol …

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…ether it be playing dress up with her many costumes or the different dances she knows, to please Torvald, and the tarantella dance is no exception. However, not only does it please Torvald, it also gives Nora some freedom as well.

The macaroons, Christmas tree, and the tarantella dance are all major symbols in A Doll’s House. These symbols all reflect Nora’s attitude mainly toward her husband and her psychological state. The symbols also help represent the themes in the play. For example, male dominant marriages. Many marriages when the play was written were dominated by the males and female freedom and expression were severely controlled and limited. This is obvious throughout the play with Torvald banning the macaroons and Nora dancing for Torvald’s pleasure. Symbols are an important part of the play and really enhanced the impact and meaning of the themes.

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