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The play - ‘A Doll’s House’

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Introduction

The play - 'A Doll's House' This play is about a woman's marriage and how it is altered by the lie she has told. The supporting characters in the play enhance the emotional effect of the play and cause us (the reader) to have various emotions which, range from annoyance to sympathy for all characters in the play. The play is about relationships in particular a picture perfect marriage, which is not all as it seems. From a more social point of view it is about women's role in society during Ibsen's (the author) lifetime. The play is a reminder to modern day women that the things we take for granted now (our independence i.e. taking out a loan without father/husband's authorisation.) were very difficult if not impossible to achieve then. The play reaches its climax in three acts, and uses its acts to get the point of the story across. Act one is the introduction to the story. It is where we (the reader) find out about Nora's (the main character) secret. It sets the scene very well, as this is where we really get to know Nora's personality, which is not at all as it first seems. Act two develops the story, this is where the supporting characters really add their personalities to the play and bring another image of Nora to the forefront and also add more depth to the story. Act three is the conclusion. ...read more.

Middle

Nora has to be (falsely) coy when she wants to say something, as she does not have the kind of relationship where she can be direct about what she wants. The tension and atmosphere is brought to the play by the complete feeling that this is a fake marriage. The secret that Nora has obviously brings tension and atmosphere to the play, because the reader knows that Nora is frequently lying to her husband and that she is constantly looking over her shoulder. Nora forged her father's signature; so that she could get a loan to take Torvald away as he was very sick. Torvald does not know this and Nora knows that Torvald would not accept the news very well. The reader begins to like Nora as you know she means well, we also feel bad that Nora has to worry about her secret coming to the open, and that from that one secret so many other lies have come. The Helmers' (Torvald and Nora) relationship is full of tension and atmosphere. The years of Nora pretending to be a different kind of woman, have had a corrosive effect on the relationship, the shine has gone. This brings an atmosphere of doom around the marriage. Their marriage has developed over the years into a slightly incestuous relationship. Torvald treats Nora as a parent would treat a child and in turn she responds by behaving like a child. ...read more.

Conclusion

Ibsen's use of symbolism in the play is achieved by the following... Firstly the play is set over Christmas, which is generally considered a time for caring, sharing, forgiveness and new beginnings. Nora has this deep, dark secret which will be forced into the open at a time when everyone should be at peace with each other. Secondly death and ill health play a strong part in the creation of the tension and atmosphere of this play. All the ill health in this play seems to mirror the ill health of the marriage; e.g. Nora's father's death made her forge the signature for the loan to help her husband. This was the start of the downfall of the marriage because it was the start of the secrets. 'A Doll's House is still relevant for today because it is all about communication and women roles in society, which we are still striving to perfect in the year 2001. Lack of honest communication between husband and wife or a non-married couple is the biggest contributor to a relationship breakdown. More so now than in Ibsen's time because women have more independence so it is easier for us to walk out on a partner then it was even 30 years ago. Women have come a long way since the Victorian times. It is easy for us to complain about the unfair treatment that we receive, but it is good for us to read a well-written play like this (and be thankful for what we have) so that we appreciate what we achieve while we continue to strive for better treatment. ?? ?? ?? ?? Mendisa-Paris Tongs-Adaser 28/04/07 1 ...read more.

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