Freedom in A Doll House
Life is a constant battle of finding one ‘s true self. Living in a world where society is making the rules makes this hard to do. Women struggle enough in modern times with becoming an independent woman and it was even more difficult for women in the 19th century. In the drama, A Doll House, written by Henrik Isben (rpt. In Thomas R. Arp and Greg Johnson, Perrine’s Literature: Structure, Sound, and Sense, 11th ed. [Boston: Wadsworth, 2012] pgs. 1092-1155) readers are shown how a modern housewife breaks away from what society has encouraged women to become. Isben uses his main character, Nora, to define what society thinks a woman should be.
In the beginning of this drama readers are introduced to a woman,Nora, can be taken as a young girl by her immaturity. Author, Kelly King Howes gives a good explanation as to why she may be this way in her article:
Raised by an indulgent, adoring father who treated her like a precious plaything, Nora simply moved from one doll ‘s house to another when she married Torvald. Although Nora has apparently inherited some measure of her father ‘s irresponsibility, she possesses an underlying seriousness and strength that is little suspected by her husband. (Howes)
This statement proves that Nora ‘s immaturity was an effect of the way she was brought up and the way she has been treated, but it also says that there is an underlining strength in her that is not shown on the surface. If one did not know that she was married with three children they would assume she was a child. The reason behind this may be because she has not been allowed independence. Living in this age she has never been independent; it was almost unheard of for a woman to have independence. Isben uses …
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…them with moral sickness every minute she is with them. Both her husband and Dr. Rank have inadvertently revealed to her that because she, like Krogstad, has committed a forgery, her diseased character will infect her children” ( Brooks 15). Brook ‘s explanation may cause readers to change their mind about Nora ‘s decision to leave.
In conclusion, this drama is an inspirational story for women across the world. Isben used Nora ‘s character to promote a new beginning for women and their freedom. Nora took a huge stand for all women when she chose to leave her husband in order to find herself and it was an inspirational move. In a world where people were trying to tell Nora what to do she was able to break down the wall that society has built up and create a life that she wanted to live. Every move she took took her a step closer to the woman she wanted to become.