A Doll's Character Analysis

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Breaking the Chains: An Analysis of A Doll’s House
Nora Helmer defiantly says, “I’ll try to discover who’s right the world or I,” (Ibsen 1773). A true hero chooses to reject the status quo and take a stand for what they believe is right. Nora wasn’t content with her polished life, causing her to not only take a stand against her manipulative husband but to also set an example for all women, helping the fight for female independence. A Doll’s House, by Henrik Ibsen, illustrates Nora Helmer as a flawed heroic character through her self motivations and determination to change the household as well as the female stereotype, thus enunciating the theme of femininity and marriage. Nora’s blatant transition from a compliant housewife to a resilient
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She is a heroic character for her positive development and maturation over the course of the play. Vocalizing for all the women that enjoy independence, her character describes the feeling of being trapped as the primed and proper doll of the household that wishes to break free of her societal responsibilities. In the beginning, Nora is an easily manipulated wife who is made to never dabble in her husband’s affairs. This is due to the belief that women aren’t made to interfere with male dominated business matters. She also endures his seemingly harmless pet names that are actually used as an intimidation technique to make her feel more submissive. Torvald states, “Is that my squirrel rummaging around?” (1728). His subtle technique of using unconventional animals such as squirrels to make her feel inferior, reveals his dominating nature. Torvald’s actions are not only controlling but they are also selfish. Nora, on the other hand, secretly helped save her husband’s life by borrowing money to fund a trip in order to improve his ill health. She did so without seeking recognition and to simply help her husband, which is what a true hero does. The play also outlines the fact that women tend to sacrifice more when they dedicate their whole…show more content…
Nora’s motivation changes significantly by the end of the play. In the beginning of the play, Nora’s sole purpose was upholding the false image that her and Torvald worked hard to publically display. Although, by the end of the story, her motivation is to primarily do what’s best for her own sake. Ibsen depicts the tense, controlling relationship of the play’s primary couple when Torvald remarks, “My sweet tooth really didn’t make a little detour through the confectioner’s?” (1730), while Nora replies with, “No I assure you Torvald-....You know I could never think of going against you,” (1730). Part of displaying the perfect family is having the perfect wife, and Torvald does this by ruling over Nora’s sense of vanity. He doesn’t want her to consume sweets because it is not a part of the doll-like image he wants her to show. However, Nora counters his beliefs by revealing her true motivation and duty is to herself by
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