A Doll's House : Torvald's Use of Language

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Torvald's Use of Language Torvald uses his language to show the audience that he treats Nora as a doll and to explain that he is in control. His thoughts and movements are her thoughts and movements, as she is purely a puppet who is dependant upon her puppet-master, Torvald. Torvald's language also shows his physical attraction over Nora, when he is teaching her the tarantella. After he teaches her the dance, he proclaims, "when you were dancing the tarantella, chasing, inviting, my blood was on fire; I couldn't stand it any longer, that's why I brought you down so early". Nora then says, "Leave me now, Torvald. Please! I don't want all this".


her, thereby showing his status, additionally he also asks her rhetorical questions and changes subject constantly showing that he is always in control or he likes to think that he is. Torvald is not only physically demanding, "I'm your husband, aren't I?" but he is also mentally demanding. "What is that? Tell me". Furthermore, he is also financially demanding as he does not trust Nora with money. It is through his language that the audience discovers that he feels she is incapable and too immature to handle a matter of such importance. This is shown in his language by the use of metaphors and patronizing language, For example, when Torvald says, "Does my little Nora acknowledge that at last?"


"You have ruined all my happiness.....To go down so miserably, to be destroyed, all because of an irresponsible". This use of language shows just how little he thinks of Nora. Although Torvald's language is unusual, it helps to depict what a strong, opinionated and chauvinistic character he is. His language is unusual for a number of reasons. The main reason being that it is a Norwegian play, translated with a colloquial language; therefore the meanings of certain words and sentences may not be the same in English as they would be in Norwegian. Furthermore because the play was written sometime ago the language has a different meaning then it would to day. This play broke theatre rules both with the acting and language; it is hard to understand Torvald's language because it is not used today. However it is the strongest part of his character as it creates his identity.

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