A Doll’s House - Nora

1505 Words7 Pages
Nora is the central character in the book A Doll’s House and it is

through her that Ibsen develops many of his themes

To what extent is loyalty shown by the lead female characters

characters? What are the consequences of this?

Within these two books loyalty is a minor theme and one that is easily

missed, indeed it is narrow. However, it is still one which weaves a

thread through both of the books encompassing major and minor

characters, the material and the abstract. In commencing this

discussion one must first refer to the definition of the word

“loyalty”; the quality of being loyal. As defined in the Cambridge

dictionary, loyal: firm and not changing in your friendship with or

support for a person or an organization, or in your belief in your

principles. And in the Collins dictionary, loyalty: faithful; a

feeling of friendship or duty towards someone or something.

Nora is the central character in the book “A Doll’s House” and it is

through her that Ibsen develops many of his themes, one of these being

the difficulty of maintaining an individual personality within the

confines of a social role/stereotype. Initially Nora seems devoted to

her marriage and her husband, “I would never dream of doing anything

you didn’t want me to”. We see the sacrifices she’s made to keep what

she has intact and her beloved alive. To all intents and purposes she

is the model of loyalty. She appears to be utterly in love with

Torvald, she “looks incredulously” at Mrs.Linde, “But, Kristine, is

that possible?”, when faced with the prospect that someone could be or

ever have been in a loveless marriage. She’s proud of her husband, “My

husband has just been made Bank Manager!”, and queen to please him,

“Oh, thank you, than...

... middle of paper ...

...for some

miracle. In this she loses her greatest financial asset and her home.

These two characters both show signs of strong loyalty but both in

different ways and to different things. Subsequently, the consequences

for both are extremely different. Nora, in “A Doll’s House”, through

her questioning of her marital relationship and the resulting

recognition of false values, manages to achieve the prospect of self

awareness and development; this is a direct consequence of her

eventual loyalty to herself. Ranyevskaya’s loyalties, on the other

hand, lead to her downfall. The combination of her personal loyalties,

her enslavement to emotions of which extravagance is the consequence,

and her loyalty to the past which results in the denial of the

present, can be seen as the two greatest personal factors that are

responsible for her loss of the Cherry Orchard.
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