Nora in a Doll House

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Nora in a doll house A Doll's House by Henrik Ibsen was first written in 1879. It is a play that is considered to be a modern tragedy depicting the married life of a middle-class couple. This play showcases the fate of Nora on a quest to finding her true identity outside of her marriage. She decides to break all social rules by abandoning her husband and children in pursuit of freedom from being the “doll-wife.” The question is: “what is the nature and source of tragedy in this play?” The tragedy in A Doll's House is that Nora is a capable woman, nevertheless, she is misshapen into a doll in her marriage due to gender roles in society. Nora has been treated like a doll all her life, first by her father and then by her husband. A doll is an object, a toy, made so one can play with whichever way they please. The way Nora is treated by her husband is clear from the start of the play. He calls her different pet names such as: “skylark,” and “little squirrel,” these nicknames symbolize how Torvald views Nora, a helpless little doll wife who must be treated with care. For example, he grabs her by the ear in in Act 1, and tells her that she is not to eat macaroons for they are bad for her teeth. At the end of the play, Nora reveals her true feelings to Torvald. She says, “ I have been greatly wronged Torvald, first by Papa and then by you” (66), she adds, “I have been your doll wife just as at home I was Papa's doll child” (67). It is evident that Nora is hurt by the way she has been treated by both her father and her husband. As a result of being treated like a doll, Nora never learns who she truly is as an individual. All her life she is being told what to do, and has no opinion of her own. She agrees with whatever acquires whatever tastes he has as her own. Being treated like a doll is tragic because Nora has not found who she is as an individual.
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