• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Work in Translation - An examination of ornamental symbols used to reinforce character in, A Dolls House, by Henrik Ibsen

Extracts from this document...


Sarang Gupta 000953-141 IB English | Work in Translation Assignment An examination of ornamental symbols used to reinforce character in, A Doll?s House, by Henrik Ibsen An examination of ornamental symbols used to reinforce character in A Doll?s House. Henrik Ibsen?s, A Doll?s House is a comprehensive exploration of many controversial issues of his day, being immediately recognized as a scandalous piece of work when released in 1879. The play becomes the starting point of the post-Romantic era, with the concept of a realistic style used to portray the identities of various characters. By the description of the minimalistic, yet powerful types of symbolic objects, multiple aspects of the story are strengthened and reinforced. One such aspect involves the characterization of women. In the play, Ibsen?s use of ornamental symbols is crucial in developing Nora?s physical and psychological portrayal in her dysfunctional, marital relationship with Torvald. The representation of Nora?s physical and psychological state in her relationship is developed with the symbolic use of the Christmas tree, her dresses, and the dollhouse imagery. The Christmas tree, primarily used as a decorative ornament for the festive season, is seen to facilitate the development of Nora?s character both physically and psychologically in her inadequate relationship with Torvald. ...read more.


Linde suggests that Nora should tell Torvald about the secret of the fraud, she smiles and states that she will do so when he is no longer as devoted to her as now, or ?when [her] dancing and dressing-up and reciting have palled on him? (12). Nora is relying on her dresses to play a role of the ideal objects that will continue to cause Torvald to be fond of her physical beauty. She is proposing that only when she becomes old and unattractive that her dressing will no longer be of use to act as the underlying cause for the role of a wife for him. Accordingly, it is revealed that the relationship between them is merely a superficial one. Their relationship only has to do with Nora?s fancy dressing to please Torvald?s sensual desires, devoid of actual love and compassion. Nora can further be seen as a plaything to her husband when she wishes for Torvald to choose a dress for her in a flirtatious manner. Evidently, she says, ?There is no one has such good taste as you?Torvald, couldn?t you take me in hand and decide what I shall go as, and what sort of a dress I shall wear?? (26). ...read more.


Although she did not directly display such a mental state, it was apparent as her only hope in her marriage with Torvald was perhaps in raising her own children also as dolls, just as she was raised by her father and Torvald. Thus the dollhouse scenario that Nora discusses as a final release of her psychological feelings displays both her mental and physical involvement in a meaningless relationship with her husband. The way that symbols can be used as an effective literary technique is evident in Henrik Ibsen?s, A doll?s House. Ibsen is subtly able to incorporate various symbols, grouped together as household ornaments, in developing both the physical and psychological portrayal of the central character, Nora. After exploring such symbols of the Christmas tree, her dresses, and the dollhouse imagery outlined in the final act, it can be concluded that Nora?s depiction as an unsatisfied woman in her marital affiliation with Torvald was put to a more heightened level. Considering Ibsen?s use of this literary effect, it can be made certain that the development of Nora?s physical and psychological aspects throughout her dysfunctional relationship with Torvald have been crucial in contributing to the play?s realistic style, giving it both success and a topic of great controversy. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our International Baccalaureate World Literature section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related International Baccalaureate World Literature essays

  1. Diary entry from Torvald from Ibsens A Dolls House.

    me; I could not see and still cannot see what this something glorious is. But, I would like to find it so that I could have my true joy back, my little skylark. Statement of intent This assignment is based on Henrik Ibsen's "A Doll's House", a play written in

  2. Contrasting the straight forward realist drama style of "A Doll's House" by Henrik Ibsen ...

    The form of the work, the epistolary novel, which was classically introduced by the great European writers of the Age of Enlightment Samuel Richardson and Montesquieu in 18th century, is one of the most favorable for expressing people's emotions and inner world.

  1. How do Durrenmatt (The Visit) and Ibsen(A Dolls House)use the institution of marriage to ...

    Unlike Clara, Mrs. Ill does not want to corrupt society; she loves her family " there are no secrets in our family. What we always say is, anything God knows, our children ought to know", (Durrenmatt, 1973 page 72). She is also aware of the fact that sometimes giving up somebody or something may lead to a later worthy life.

  2. How does the social setting affect the husband-wife relationship in A Dolls House and ...

    Therefore she kept the loan she took from Krogstad a secret. Since the setting of the play is the 19th century women were not supposed to be business minded and were supposed to be at home tending to the housework.

  1. Alienation in The Metamorphosis and A Doll's House

    Nora played her role well until Helmer revealed his true side where he was faced with a challenge to protect Nora but was more worried about himself than anyone else. And Gregor fulfilled his role until he was physically incapable of doing so any longer and lost the will to live any longer.

  2. Notes on Nora's transformation in "A Dolls House".

    She is caught in a dilemma of whether to follow her own intentions or to perform the expected roles well. At the beginning, Nora tries hard to comply with the social rules to act as a good wife, mother and daughter.

  1. In A Dolls House by defying societal norms Nora enhances the empowerment of ...

    A number of men pigeonholed every woman to be a frivolous spendthrift that knows not the value of money. "That is like a woman! [?] You know what I think about that. No debt, no borrowing." It is ironic that Nora should defy Torvald and complements the theme of gender roles in 19th century society.

  2. A Doll's House, The Reflective Statement

    much of the housework and generally do not pursue careers in male dominated professions, such as pilots.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work