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The Doll House

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A "The Doll House" written by Henrik Ibsen is a play about a housewife who lives in the shadow of her husband and in the end becomes extremely unsatisfied, unhappy, and confused about her life. The characters that will be included in the analysis of this play are Nora Helmer (the wife), Torvald Helmer (the husband), Mrs. Linde (Nora's friend from the past), Nils Krogstad (an employee of the bank), and Dr. Rank (Torvald's doctor and close friend). The analysis performed will unveil realistic elements such as role portrayal, confusion, heartache, disappointment, betrayal, true friendship, love, and second chances by providing multiple examples of realistic character actions identified throughout the play.

Nora was the typical housewife of that time; one who stayed at home while her husband worked. Nora had servants who helped her take care of the kids but her main job and obligation (as her husband describes it) was to take care of her husband and kids. This was one of the first realistic elements identified in the play. Nora's role could be compared to how the roles of a wife and mother were defined during the 19th century.

Another realistic element was Nora's feeling of being confused and unhappy when her husband Torvald turned on her. This event occurred after the secret of how she borrowed money from Krogstad and forged her father's name on the paper work was brought to her husband's attention in a letter that was placed in their mailbox by Krogstad. Her husband no longer trusted her and did not want her to raise the kids. Then once he received the note back from Krogstad and the risk of his being blackmailed was gone, he was once again happy and wanted to be with her as before. Torvald's reaction is typical of how some people may react in a situation such as this. First, they would turn their back on the person who did something that may have impacted them but once everything clears, they want to resume the relationship as before. Nora's response to Torvald's behavior was also realistic. She realized that he was not the person that she thought he was and the way that he turned on her so quickly was an eye opener. Once someone feels as though that an individual turned their back on them, their relationship with that person changes. It is not the same.

This also holds true with Nora and Krogstad. The secret of her borrowing the money was revealed and the trust between the two was damaged. It was no way that Nora could trust Krogstad again after this incident. His idle threats of reveling what she did to her husband wore on her and made her feel very nervous and not like her normal self. Nora's behavior when she knew her husband was about to find out what she had done was another realistic element identified. This feeling came across after Krogstad placed the note about her acts in the mailbox. Her husband was the only one with the key and she knew how often he retrieves and reviews the mail that is received. For Nora, the build of the anxiety, stress, and nervousness as the time passed was the same as it would be for someone



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