Sacrificial Inequality

1524 Words7 Pages
“Had Adam tenderly reproved his wife, and endeavored to lead her to repentance instead of sharing in her guilt, I should be much more ready to accord to man that superiority which he claims; but as the facts stand disclosed by the sacred historian, it appears to me that to say the least, there was as much weakness exhibited by Adam as by Eve. They both fell from innocence, and consequently from happiness, but not from equality,” (Grimke, 1838).

For as long as mankind has been able to function in society, there has always been a line dividing the roles of man and woman. Women have always been the lesser, especially in Western Civilization, and the expectations to be the “perfect housewife” have continued on into the 21st century. In “A Doll’s House,” a play set in 19th century Sweden by Henrik Ibsen, a woman named Nora had taken out a loan behind her husband’s back in order to take him to Italy to save his life. She not only had done this in secrecy, but also forged her father’s signature to receive the loan. If Torvald, her husband, were to find out, Nora would be in big trouble, especially since he thought she was like a little child. When Nora’s friend, Mrs. Linde, comes to visit, Torvald finds Nora’s big secret through a series of events and nearly disowns her to save his image. Mrs. Linde, a widow, had left her man, Krogstad—also the man who gave Nora the loan—for a richer man to provide for her family. Although these women had made reasonable sacrifices for their loved ones, their men didn’t understand and allowed society to decide how to react to their women. In “A Doll’s House,” Ibsen uses Nora and Mrs. Linde to illustrate that women are expected to make sacrifices to their happiness for their family that men wouldn’t m...

... middle of paper ...

...ity for the ones they love because they believe that’ll help the relationship. If Nora had stood up to Torvald before, they may not have even been together anymore because Torvald would’ve realized it was really the “idea” of Nora that he was in love with and not actually her. This play caused great controversy because a woman had stepped out of what had become “her place” and been her own person. This was peculiar because it was orthodox for a woman to stay home doing housework and raising children. Although this isn’t how life is today anymore, it is still unusual to society for a man to be doing what was “a woman’s job.” This is the way it’s been for decades and centuries and the way it may stay for years to come. The only cure to the inequality between genders is to diminish the parallel between nature and nurture and break the stereotypes set up by humanity.

More about Sacrificial Inequality

Open Document