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A Doll's House

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A Doll's House

The following essay will critically analyse a passage from the play "A Dolls House" by Henrik Ibsen. Between the pages 222 and 225 there seems

to be shift in the plot, as Nora takes a different attitude towards her and Helmer's relationship. All of a sudden instead of trying to preserve it, she

wishes to leave the house. It could be argued that her radical change in mind is not irrational or unprovoked. Before she starts getting changed to

leave, Helmer had just finished forgiving her, for he had received and read Krogstad's second letter which included the forged document, but prior

to this he had basically told her that he could no longer love her: Helmer: "...Oh, to think that I should have to say this to someone I've loved so

much-someone I still .... Well, that's all over now-it must be;" Then spontaneously he starts forgiving her as he had received the second letter,

everything else he had told her before was forgotten. It is very cold of him to go from one thing to another, hence it cannot possibly be believed

that his feelings are true for Nora. People do not love a person one moment, and then deny them it, or vise versa. Nora's reason for leaving, as she

explains, is that she feels he doesn't love her: Nora: "You've never loved me, you've only found it pleasant to be in love with me." As well as her

taking no part in family decisions or even her own, as she and Helmer have never sat down to have a serious discussion, in the past eight years,

until now. She is his doll , and has no say in her own future, let alone her owner's (Helmer). Another aspect, included in the book's theme, is

sexism, an attitude which stereotypes people according to gender. In forgiving Nora, Helmer makes various comments characterised as sexist.

Firstly, he tells Nora: Helmer: "...It was just you hadn't the experience to realise what you were doing." Here he is referring to the crime she

committed of forging her father's signature, to obtain the loan from Krogstad. This simple sentence shows Helmer's lack of confidence in Nora's

decisions, he appears to be treating her as a child. He speaks of her inexperience, when in reality she is an adult, who has lived long enough to

distinguish right from wrong. The manner in which he forgives her is as though he believes she did not know what she was getting into, like a child

who plays with matches without foreseeing the consequences. Still, he goes on to say: Helmer: "...I shouldn't be a proper man if your feminine

helplessness didn't make you twice as attractive to me." Alone in itself this sentence has a lot to say for Helmer's opinion on



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