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Henrik Ibsen's A Doll's House Essay

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Henrik Ibsen's A Doll's House


Ibsens's play is a modern tragedy which functions on two levels,
questioning the established social order of the day and presenting the
death of a marriage. Both these events create a great deal of tension,
and combined with the language and actions used by the characters,
make the play very intense.

The main cause of dramatic tension throughout the play is the way that
the difference between the real nature of the characters and the roles
they are assigned by society is presented. This difference is
demonstrated by the disparity in the action of the characters in
comparison with their lexical choice.

The initial impression given by the opening scene is of a happy
traditional household. The first element of dramatic tension in the
play is introduced when

Nora demonstrates this inconsistency when she lies to Helmer about
having eaten macaroons,

Helmer: "Has my little sweet-tooth been indulging herself in town
today, by any chance?"

Nora: "No, how can you think such a thing?"

It displays the way in which Nora is not always entirely honest with
Helmer in order to maintain the inferior and obeying image he has of
her. It indicates that all is not as it first appears, creating
dramatic irony and tension, as the audience are aware of the truth,
yet Helmer is not.

The immediate declarative used, "No" followed by the interrogative "How
can you think such a thing" displays that Nora is firstly attempting
to remove all doubt of her innocence, and then switch the focus of the
conversation to Helmer to distract from the fact that it is she who is
lying.

Language is used to create dramatic tension as the different registers
used by the characters in different situa...


... middle of paper ...


...s something is going to happen or its near the
end

Unexpected turn when Mrs Linde says Helmer must know the truth Nora

HINTS AT PLOT
Helmer points out Nora's vulnerability - what would happen if he died.
When Helmer condemns Krogstad - dramatic irony because audience know
Nora has done the same as him.

WAITING
Nora almost telling Helmer but delayed as Dr rank drops in and gives
black crosses so she has to wait longer.

Helmer goes to study to read the letter - audience and Nora are
waiting to see what happens when he returns.

DESPERATION

Krogstad warns Nora against suicide - shows how desperate she must be.

Tarantella dance displays her desperation physically.

IMAGERY
The Christmas tree reflects Nora's state (e.g. bright and colourful at
the beginning, candles burnt out nearer the end)
Fancy dress represents Nora wearing her false self


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