A Doll’s House: Life as a Doll
Imagine having every part of your life controlled by another person. You do everything they say, follow all their rules, and have little to no say in what you do in your life. Nora Helmer from A Doll’s House lived this lifestyle for many years until she left her husband. A Doll’s House is a play written by Henrik Ibsen that describes the life of Nora and her husband Torvald Helmer. The two live what it appears happily together until it is revealed that Nora has falsified documents to take out a loan to save her husband’s life and it may cost Torvald his reputation. When Torvald learns of her error he lashes out at her, accusing her of being an unfit mother resulting in Nora realizing she never loved Torvald or the life she lived. The play concludes with her stating she’s lived in a doll’s house her whole life and is tired of it. The significance of the title of A Doll’s House is the comparison of Nora and her life to a doll’s because of how she is controlled by the men in her life.
Nora states that not only her father but also her husband have controlled every aspect of her life. She no longer feels human because she never received the opportunity to think and act for herself without being reprimanded. Her whole life she did what was expected of her and did not lash back. When her husband was dying, Nora wanted to do the right thing and got the money needed to keep him alive. Years later, when Torvald learned of her deed, he insensitively strikes her and calls her many nasty names. He immediately takes it all back when the loan is returned and realizes his reputation is safe. Nora realizes the life she is living is a lie and tells Torvald she’s leaving him to go discover who she really is. She...
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...viously were. It’s later discovered that she craves the repetitiveness of her life because of the safety that’s associated with it. While waiting to board the ferry, Eveline repeats the same prayer over and over because of its familiarity. This symbol for her attachment to consistency helps her realize on the docks that her home life of cooking, cleaning, and caring for her brother’s children is the life she was born to live.
Eveline’s fear of changing her ways and the unknown leave her paralyzed at the dock, stuck to her current life. She knows in her heart that leaving Ireland isn’t for her and the spontaneous decision to run away with Frank is foolish. The current life she knows and the familiarity associated with it keep her in Ireland. Her inability to leave her home life may have cost her love and happiness however her comfort is reveled to be more important.
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