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A Doll's House Reflective Statement

Essay by   •  February 7, 2017  •  Term Paper  •  413 Words (2 Pages)  •  1,897 Views

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Topic: How was your cultural and contextual considerations of A Doll’s House developed through the interactive oral?

Henrik Ibsen’s A Doll’s House was written in 19th century Europe over a hundred years ago. Yet, the themes and connections Ibsen creates through Nora’s struggle for freedom resonate just as loudly within modern audiences. Through the interactive Oral process, I was able to understand the importance of appearance in both Victorian times and today and realize the universal complexity of relationships.

Torvald Helmer is depicted by Ibsen as a character who's obsessed with his outer appearance and how society perceives him. The extend of Torvald’s fanatical fixation on maintaining a perfect appearance is perhaps best described by Nora, who stated that she could never tell Torvald that she went behind his back because it would destroy Torvald’s “masculine pride”. While Helmer’s attitude may have been somewhat exaggerated, appearance still plays a huge role within society today. Growing up as a first generation immigrant, my parents always taught me that making a good first impression was paramount to my success in life. This is because my parents understood that even today, people judge you based on how you look. Before you speak a single word, people are making judgements based off of the way you dress, compose yourself, and walk. Personally, I felt that I was always perceived as an “outsider” due to my different skin color, and I felt that I needed to work harder to be able to “fit in” with the rest of children. Through the IO process, the discussion of the theme “appearance vs. reality” as applied to A Doll’s House opened my eyes to the significance of appearance within the social realm even today.

The interactive oral discussions also developed my understanding of the complex nature of relationships and how the issues between Torvald and Nora can also be applied to modern couples. I made a very personal connection by comparing Torvald and Nora’s relationship to my own parents. Like any other relationship, my parents can sometimes disagree with each other. Usually these issues are minor and can be resolved, but Nora’s departure from Torvald and her family made me reevaluate the strength of my own parents’ relationship and ask myself: what types of disagreements are irreparable and can only result in the end of a relationship? Ibsen’s portrayal of the collapse of the Helmer marriage made me understand how complicated relationships can be and that sometimes there are differences even love cannot fix.



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