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Henrik Isben's The Dolls House: A Comparison And Contrast Of 2 Main Charachters, Nora And Kristine.

1056 words - 4 pages

As women of the Victorian period, Nora Helmer and Kristine Linde were both prisoners and pioneers of the time. In that society, women were viewed as being inferior to men and were not provided full legal rights. Women of that era were expected to stay at home and attend to the needs of their spouse and children. While Nora did just that in her home, Kristine was pushed into a world outside of that and was forced to survive.When her husband took ill and desperately needed to get away, Nora found a way to make it happen. Women at that time were unable to get a loan without either their husband's or father's consent. Nora forged her dying father's signature in order to secure the welfare and health of her beloved Torvald. She didn't see the harm in breaking the law, as long as it was to save the life of her husband. Nils Krogstad, the "loan shark", eventually told Nora that she was violating the law. Nora replied:"This I refuse to believe. A daughter hasn't the right to protect her dying father from anxiety and care? A wife hasn't the right to save her husband's life? I don't know much about laws but I'm sure that somewhere in the books these things are allowed." (Isben 67).Nora knew that if she were to tell her ill father about the situation concerning Torvald's health, he most likely would have died due to stress of this news. If she had spoken to Torvald about his illness, he would have forbidden her from taking out the loan. He wouldn't want to be in debt at all, let alone to his wife. She saw it as her responsibility to not disclose that information to Torvald, mainly because of the repercussions it would bring.At the conclusion of the play when Nora realizes that her secret will be revealed, she nervously awaits Torvald's reaction. He needlessly blows up, making her realizes that her marriage was a facade, a completely one-sided playful wedlock. With this revelation, she decided to leave Torvald and her children. He makes many futile attempts to have her stay, the primary argument being her duty as a wife and mother. Nora tells him that she has other duties; most of all an obligation to making herself happy. In reply to his efforts to make her stay she says:"I believe that, before all else, I'm a human being, no less than you-or anyway I ought to try to become one. I know the majority thinks you're right, Torvald, and plenty of books agree with you, too. But I can't go on being satisfied with what the majority says, or what's written in books. I have to think over these things myself and try to understand them" (Isben 111).In her leaving and the abandoning of her family and the memories that coincide with them, Nora was able to gain her freedom as an individual and was now in search for new life and responsibilities.Kristine Linde, a childhood friend of Nora has lived a different life from the sheltered one that Nora has. In contrast to...

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