A Doll's House
By Henrik Ibsen
Why this book?
A controversial play because of its end. Nora Helmer is the main character, a Norwegian married woman, wife of a bank manager, and a mother of three. Her life elapses day after day without opportunities for self-fulfillment in the last decades of the 19th century. I can’t say this female character is a feminist for its time, because she lives in a world full of laws made by men; so, in this sense she is like a doll, a superficial and wasteful person, and she changes slowly from act to act; she feels empty, she contemplates killing herself and at the end of the play Nora leaves her husband and family trying to escape from a stifling male-dominated society. Although this play was not intended written as a feminist, it has a great historical value in this field. If after reading you try to imagine what kind of life she could have out of the dollhouse, then you can read Elfriede Jelinek’s play Was geschah, nachdem Nora ihren Mann verlassen hatte oder Stützen der Gesellschaften (What Happened After Nora Left Her Husband or Pillars of Society) to check if in 1984 a woman with ambitions in a capitalist background has significant changes.
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