Black 1 Kimberly Black Professor Teshie Herbert English 102 12 July 2017 A Doll’s House, Nora and Society Could you walk away from it all like Nora did in Henrik Ibsen, “A Doll’s House”? Just leave it all, your husband, children, home and financial security the only life you have ever known knowing society will judge and reticule you. Today in the twenty first century women have choice, freedom, and independence and high-status careers. Just imagine living as Nora did in the late 1800s, being valued as only a housewife, mother and an object to be toyed with. Nora realized like so many other women that she needed her independence and wanted to be free to make choices about her own life. Nora made the right decision and showed strength when she walked out and left her husband and three children, making a life-changing choice to put herself first, and challenging women’s rights during a time period where it was ignored. Centuries ago Nora’s decision to walk out on her family at the end of the play seemed unspeakable to many who watched. Nora’s decision to leave Torvald and the children was the right choice for her even though it was taboo in this period. Nora is a primary example of the role of women in the 19 th century, being that she did not have freedom of choice and she was seen as a toy to play with rather that a productive member of society. Nora was belittled daily by her husband Torvald, who treated her like a childish fragile doll using pet names like “my little songbird, “little featherhead” and “my sweet little skylark” when he spoke to her. Nora had a secret and that secret made her feel proud and gave her a purpose outside of the home. Nora loved her husband
Black 2 and when he fell ill they needed money to save him, and she knew Torvald would not accept a bond. Women were not allowed to get bonds without the permission of their husband or father, so Nora chose to fraudulently borrow money to save her husband she loved so deeply. Keeping this a secret, Nora made sacrifices and worked little side jobs that she was allowed to work to pay back the bond. Nora choice to break the law to get the money her and her husband needed to save his life was not completely immoral. Nora was happy with her life, or so she thought. Nora began to fear Torvald ever finding out after they spoke about Krogstad fraud. Torvald says “just think, how a guilty man like that has to lie and play the hypocrite with everyone, how he has to wear a mask in the presence of those near and dear to him, even before his own wife and children. And about the children, that is the most terrible part” (Ibsen). When Nora was forced to reveal her secret “she believed Torvald would forgive her and take the blame on his shoulders” (Scott 19-22). Yet, Torvald thinking only of himself how her actions will destroy his good moral
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