An analysis of A Doll’s House main theme: Independence Essay

An analysis of A Doll’s House main theme: Independence Essay

Length: 932 words (2.7 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Better Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview


In Henrik Ibsen’s A Doll’s House, Nora Helmer is a traditional “angel in the house” she is a human being, but first and foremost a wife and a mother who is devoted to the care of her children, and the happiness of her husband. The play is influenced by the Victorian time period when the division of men and women was evident, and each gender had their own role to conform to. Ibsen’s views on these entrenched values is what lead to the A Doll’s House becoming so controversial as the main overarching theme of A Doll’s House is the fight for independence in an otherwise patriarchal society. This theme draws attention to how women are capable in their own rights, yet do not govern their own lives due to the lack of legal entitlement and independence. Although Ibsen’s play can be thought to focus on the theme of materialism vs. people, many critics argue that Ibsen challenges the traditional gender roles through his portrayal of Nora and Torvald. Throughout the play Nora faces an internal struggle for self-discovery, which Ibsen creates to show that women are not merely objects, but intelligent beings who form independent thoughts.
The theme in the play is widely centered on independence, as Nora shares her experiences with it during the beginning of the play. In Act I, it is Christmas Eve and Nora is decorating the house while Dr.Rank and Mrs. Linde visit the household. Nora and Mrs. Linde began talking, and Nora starts to reminisce about the time when she and Torvald had first gotten married and she was required to work to earn extra money because they were having financial difficulties. Nora looks back on that moment and has fond memories although the working world is seen as a “man’s” world; she reveled in the independence to make...


... middle of paper ...


...at the time would have been unheard of.
A Doll’s House by Ibsen is one of the most influential plays of our time. It shows how society was constructed for women in the 19th century, and continues to educate people about women’s rights. Independent thought, decisions and actions are all a part of being human, and Nora determined this through her journey to discover herself. It was not a mistake that Torvald read the letter, it was rather a blessing in disguise for Nora. This play can be interpreted in different ways and in various perspectives, but ultimately Ibsen created this play to attempt to show the inequality within the society he lived in at the time, which he shows by his representation of Nora Helmer; the angel that broke away from the house.




Works Cited

Ibsen, H. (1992). A doll's house. (Dover thrift ed., pp. 1-80). New York: Dover Publications Inc.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Analysis Of Ibsen's A Doll's House Essay

- "A Doll House" A critical Analysis When Nora slammed the door shut in her doll's house in 1879, her message sent shockwaves around the world that persist to this day. "I must stand quite alone", Nora declared after finding out that her ideal of life was just a imagination of her and that all her life had been build up by others people's, specifically her husband and her dad ideas, opinions and tastes. Nora is the pampered wife of an aspiring bank manager Torvald Halmer. In a desperate attempt to saves her husband's life Nora once asked for a loan so she and her family could move somewhere where her husband could recover from his sickness....   [tags: A Doll's House Essays]

Better Essays
1853 words (5.3 pages)

Analysis Of Henrik Ibsen 's ' A Doll 's House ' Essay

- In Henrik Ibsen’s play A Doll’s House there are many themes, but none more important than the main theme of women’s rights. The theme of women’s rights is revolved around the main character Nora, who is subjected to oppression and treated like she is inferior to the men in the play until the end when stands up for herself. Ibsen representation of Nora comes across as the traditional woman during the time period, the Victorian era, in which the play takes place. This projection of Nora’s character is made evident throughout the play, from her actions to the way the other characters act towards her....   [tags: Henrik Ibsen, A Doll's House, Woman]

Better Essays
1113 words (3.2 pages)

Analysis Of The Play ' A Doll House ' By Henrick Ibsen Essay

- In the play A Doll House, written by Henrick Ibsen, many people see the main theme to be a feministic worldview, or a finding of one’s inner self through life’s struggles. Her husband’s request and the outlook of society on the roles of women in life bar Nora down throughout the story. During this time period, women were supposed to look after the children and take care of the house with hardly any freedoms and without ever contradicting their husbands or other men. Henrick Isben uses the diverse character that Nora is to illustrate the struggle women had to endure throughout the 17th-20th centuries and even still today....   [tags: Henrik Ibsen, A Doll's House, Husband, The Play]

Better Essays
1151 words (3.3 pages)

A Push to Freedom in Henrik Ibsen's A Doll's House Essay

- A Push to Freedom in Henrik Ibsen's A Doll's House Sometime after the publication of "A Doll's House", Henrik Ibsen spoke at a meeting of the Norwegian Association for Women's Rights. He explained to the group, "I must decline the honor of being said to have worked for the Women's Rights movement....   [tags: Feminism Ibsen Doll's House]

Free Essays
1392 words (4 pages)

A Doll's House Essay example

- Groundbreaking themes were presented in Henrik Ibsen's play, A Doll's House. The play has shared an important message regarding feminism. It was released in the 1800's, a time when women were not taken seriously, which makes the work essential for humanity to observe and respond to. One of the most important aspects of Ibsen's play was the end, in which the main character, Nora Helmer leaves her husband. This was a shocking scene for unprepared audiences in theaters through out the world. Divorce and separation from one's spouse and children was not proper to discuss in public because it was not looked highly on....   [tags: Henrik, Play Analysis]

Better Essays
983 words (2.8 pages)

The Theme of Superiority Essay

- How do the authors, Strindberg and Ibsen, portray the theme of superiority in “Miss Julie” and “A Doll’s House”. In both “Miss Julie” and “A Doll’s House”, August Strindberg (1888), and Henrik Ibsen (1879) present the theme of superiority in various ways. Superiority can be seen from many sides, Social superiority, the superiority of men over women and at different points the superiority of women over men feature in both plays. At the time both plays were written, the naturalistic movement was taking place and one of the four principles suggested that “human beings have no free will, or very little of it, because hereditary and environment are so powerful in determining the course of human a...   [tags: Literary Analysis]

Better Essays
1479 words (4.2 pages)

Theme of Self-discovery in The Awakening and A Doll's House Essay

- The Theme of Self-discovery in The Awakening and A Doll House       In Chopin's The Awakening and Ibsen's A Doll House, the main characters each experience an awakening. Although they lead different lives, Nora Helmer and Edna Pontellier's respective awakenings are caused by similar factors. From the beginning, neither character fits the standard stereotype of women in the society in which they lived. Another factor that influences Nora and Edna's awakenings is their marital relationship. Neither Nora nor Edna are treated as an equal by their husband....   [tags: comparison compare contrast essays]

Better Essays
1134 words (3.2 pages)

Henrik Ibsen's A Doll’s House Essay

- A Doll’s House by Henrik Ibsen is a realistic drama that explores how the imbalanced treatment of women can dictate who they become. Nora Helmer embodies the need for evolution in regards to women and their roles within the family. The importance of this play, which was written in 1879, is still relevant in the modern world. This play helps to bring attention to the characters people play as a result of their circumstances. The characterization of Nora and Torvald Helmer is a testament to possible inequalities in marriage....   [tags: imbalanced treatment of women, literary analysis]

Better Essays
1036 words (3 pages)

Essay about A Doll's House and Things Fall Apart

- ... Without Mrs. Linden’s support, Nora would have to suffer alone. Nora gained strength to face her problems from Mrs. Linden’s encouragement. In society, friends play an important part in a person’s life especially when one is young, because “in these delicate times as a teenager, it is often that friends, more than family, will play a greater roll in your own emotional recovery” (Cadena). No matter what circumstances arise in life, they seem to appear smaller and less difficult when backed by friends....   [tags: Henrik Ibsen, Chinua Achebe, story analysis]

Better Essays
1600 words (4.6 pages)

Theme and Symbolism in the Writings of Toni Morrison Essay

- Chloe Anthony Wofford, better known as Toni Morrison to the literary world, has written many novels in her time between 1970 and 1990. Many of Toni Morrison’s themes and subjects are good and evil, love, hate, friendship, beauty and ugliness, and death. Toni Morrison’s novels and poems can be analyzed in regard to two important literary elements, which are theme and symbolism. Toni Morrison’s writing is affected by her upbringing in Georgia where sharecropping and racial violence were extremely prevalent and by embracing her heritage as a child through African folklore, music, rituals, and myths, where her family was intimate with the supernatural....   [tags: Literacy Analysis ]

Better Essays
986 words (2.8 pages)