A Doll's House

A Doll's House: Revolution From Within

When Nora Helmer slammed the door shut on her doll's house in 1879, her message sent shockwaves around the world that persist to this day. "I must stand quite alone," Nora declares, "if I am to understand myself and everything about me" (Ibsen 64). After years of playing the role of a superficial doll, Nora transforms into an assertive and determined woman. While significant events throughout A Doll's House hasten her sudden actions, the true cause of Nora's transformation stems from a revolution from within. Ibsen dramatizes Nora's discovery of identity by means of various literary techniques. By the finale of the play, Nora has survived a searing deconstruction of a false sense of self, the doll, and experiences an equally painful emergence of a new being, one devoid of the social pressures and expectations that had haunted her for years. Through her myth of transformation, Nora proves to be an ideal tragic hero.

In the unreal world of A Doll's House, all roles and assumptions are illusive; "wife" and "mother" are the types of facades that represent the game of happy family wherein dolls masquerade as human beings. The double character of Nora is slowly revealed. She...

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