A doll’s House by Ibsen reveals the underlying role of women during the time and the problems that arise from imbalance of power among men and women. Throughout the story, the main character Nora was treated like a child by her husband Torvald who has a habit of addressing Nora by her pet names which implies his personal convictions about her petite size and helpless condition. Norar’s way of thinking and her outlook on life as a mother and wife are both entirely led by her husbandr’s power over her.
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In the play, women were expected to be well-behaved and obedient to their husbands at all times, and men were expected to act manly and not to demonstrate traits that would normally be considered feminine. Nora feels the societal pressure to act a certain way and when their relationships starts to face difficulties, their roles and expectations start to become challenged. Therefore, Nora protested against social expectations as a mother, first by breaking the rule of marriage drawback, and later by forming a step to leave her husband and three children in order to educate herself and value herself independence.
In the case of Nora, due to the unfairly male dominated society, not only is she in a position to be a provider for her children, but also due to the demeaning attitudes of her father and husband she has remained in a state of arrested development her whole life. Although both characters have three children, they do not share the same attitude or feelings toward each other. The way Torvalds treats Nora shows his selfish intentions. Norar’s powerlessness was attractive to Torvald because he feel pleasure just by making her follow his commands at the expense of her dignity. He had to be in control especially when Nora is clueless about some fundamental maler’s ability to deal properly with financial matters. Nora expected Torvald to take the blame for her mistake while he also makes it clear that his reputation is more significant than his love for her or his children when he mentioned, no man would sacrifice his honor for the one he loves (Ibsen, 1192).
This also shows the drawbacks in their marriage and the consequences of not having open and trustful communications with each other. The play is not just a narrative but also about personal development and gendered patterns of power in patriarchal culture.
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