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"What qualities of Daisy from the 'Great Gatsby' and Nora from 'A Dolls House' mark them as key characters in both books?"

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World Literature comparative essay "What qualities of Daisy from the 'Great Gatsby' and Nora from 'A Dolls House' mark them as key characters in both books?" By Sylvia Palmai 6.I.B. Both the 'Great Gatsby' and 'A Dolls House' contribute to the rich collection of books that have marked the 1800-1900's, through their reflective theme's of society of the time, depicted through fascinating three-dimensional characters. These two women, Daisy Buchanon and Nora Helmer have been specifically chosen, being the subservient and inferiorly treated possessions of their husbands, who mask their possible intellectual potential. Whilst Nora develops a dramatic character change throughout the book by realising her duties to herself, Daisy remains the same careless and carefree person she was at the beginning of 'The Great Gatsby'. Comparisons will be made regarding both women's relationships with their husbands, and children, as well as a deeper analysis into their personalities, uncovering their secret beliefs, motivations, priorities in life, and moral compass'. Furthermore, the study of the two characters will unveil their significance in the books, as well as their influence on those who have read both novels. Initially, the plot of both books must be elucidated in order to enable a greater understanding of Daisy and Nora's importance. 'The Great Gatsby' takes place in the contrasting worlds of the wealthy East Egg and the underprivileged West Egg. ...read more.


When he observes it on her foot, she adds "Well, I'll allow you to look a little higher4". As a married woman she shouldn't be acting so revealingly, but her intentions are not the same as Daisy's. Whilst Daisy shows her interest in Gatsby, it is only because she hopes he can share his wealth with her. Nora is simply acting like a child, proud of her new toy. She is playing with Dr. Rank, one of the rare people in the book who don't treat her as an inferior like her husband does. When the first private conversation between Nora and Dr. Rank takes place, Nora explains that she always has time to spend with him, whilst Dr. Rank replies "I'll enjoy that for as long as I can5". Respect like that is never sensed from Torvald towards Nora. Nora's husband refers to her as "an expensive little person" as opposed to his wife, comparing her to a child. Nora has accepted that Torvald will never think more highly of her, but feels that deep in his heart, he does have genuine love for her. That is why she borrowed money from Krogstad, as she hoped that even if the truth comes out, her husband will understand her selfless action. Though she suspected his initial reaction would be anger. "He would be so ashamed and humiliated if he knew he owed me anything6". ...read more.


It is a difficult act for a woman to leave her conventional and sentimental feelings behind, and become a new person of precociousness. Nora was ready to slam the door behind her, and end her life as a fragile doll in the hands of a domineering chauvinist. She encapsulates all the characteristics needed in a heroine in the 1800-1900's, and introduced a new era when subordinated women can break social conventions. For this reason, she is the untimely key character if 'A Dolls House'. The unmistakable difference between the two wives is their contrasting perspectives and priorities in life. Whilst Nora chooses the route of honesty and independence after realising her falsified life, Daisy remains the same immoral and superficial person she was at the beginning of the book, with a drive for money. After all, she was the golden girl. Overall, both books touched taboo subjects that attacked social conventions, by exposing the social and political complexities of relationships through realism. Traditional values and sentimental ideals were ignored, to reflect upon the controversial realities that people face independently from the shackles that society imposes on them. 1 Great Gatsby Page 72 2 A Dolls House Page 4 3 The Great Gatsby Page 112 4 A Dolls House Page 57 5 A Dolls house Page 54 6 A Dolls House Page 18 7 The Great Gatsby Page 22 8 The Great Gatsby Page 113 9 A Dolls House Page 93 10 A Dolls House Page 99 1 ...read more.

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