A Doll House Summary

A Doll House Summary - A D oll House Summa ry Christmas...

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A Doll House Summary Christmas Eve, living room is setting of entire play Characters: Torvald Helmer (a lawyer), Nora (his wife), Dr. Rank, Mrs. Linde, Nils Krogstad (clerk), Helmer children (3), Ann-Marie (Helmer nurse), Helene (maid), Delivery Boy **Action in Helmer residence ACT ONE SUMMARY: A Doll’s House opens on Christmas Eve. Nora Helmer enters her well-furnished living room—the setting of the entire play—carrying several packages. Torvald Helmer, Nora’s husband, comes out of his study when he hears her arrive. He greets her playfully and affectionately, but then chides her for spending so much money on Christmas gifts. He offers to buy her something. Their conversation reveals that the Helmers have had to be careful with money for many years, but that Torvald has recently obtained a new position at the bank where he works that will afford them a more comfortable lifestyle. Helene, the maid, announces that the Helmers’ dear friend Dr. Rank has come to visit. At the same time, another visitor has arrived, this one unknown. To Nora’s great surprise, Kristine Linde, a former school friend, comes into the room. The two have not seen each other for years, but Nora mentions having read that Mrs. Linde’s husband passed away a few years earlier. Mrs. Linde tells Nora that when her husband died, she was left with no money and no children. Nora tells Mrs. Linde about her first year of marriage to Torvald. She explains that they were very poor and both had to work long hours. Torvald became sick, she adds, and the couple had to travel to Italy so that Torvald could recover. Nora inquires further about Mrs. Linde’s life, and Mrs. Linde explains that for years she had to care for her sick mother and her two younger brothers. She states that her mother has passed away, though, and that the brothers are too old to need her. Instead of feeling relief, Mrs. Linde says she feels empty because she has no occupation; she hopes that Torvald may be able to help her obtain employment. Nora promises to speak to Torvald and then reveals a great secret to Mrs. Linde when she says she is like a child— without Torvald’s knowledge, Nora illegally borrowed money for the trip that she and Torvald took to Italy; she told Torvald that the money had come from her father who died shortly after. For years, Nora reveals, she has worked and saved in secret copying, slowly repaying the debt, and soon it will be fully repaid. Krogstad, a low-level employee at the bank where Torvald works, arrives and proceeds into Torvald’s study. Nora reacts uneasily to Krogstad’s (kids, widower) presence, and Dr. Rank, coming out of the study, says Krogstad is “morally sick.” They eat macaroons, said to be from Kristine. Once he has finished meeting with Krogstad, Torvald comes into the living room and says that he can probably hire Mrs. Linde at the bank. Dr. Rank, Torvald, and Mrs. Linde then depart, leaving Nora by herself. Nora’s children
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This note was uploaded on 10/18/2009 for the course DRAM 115 taught by Professor Adamdavidson during the Spring '08 term at UNC.

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A Doll House Summary - A D oll House Summa ry Christmas...

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