A Doll’s House by Henrik Ibsen

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A Doll's House by Henrik Ibsen

Part 1

Mrs Linde. Yes, anyhow I think it would be delightful to have what one needs.

Nora. No, not only what one needs, but heaps and heaps of money.”

Their house is described as comfortably and tastefully furnished but Nora doesn’t want to just live comfortably, she wants to be filthy rich. She's greedy and has a long history of going through money like water.

She also wants to be treated like an equal. She wants to make big, important business dealings like a man. This is a mistake because she has absolutely no concept of money:

Nora. It cost about two hundred and fifty pounds. That's a lot, isn't it?”

Nora doesn't understand how society works. She thinks that Krogstad will show her mercy simply because her motives were supposedly altruistic.

She prides herself way too much on how well she’s fooled her husband:

Nora [smiling]. Yes, that is what Torvald and all the others think, but—“

Her sneaky borrowing of money and lying has made her arrogant:

Nora [tossing her head]. Oh, if it is a wife who has any head for business--a wife who has the wit to be a little bit clever—“

Now she's in way over her head. I think it will be a while before Nora can swallow her pride and ask Helmer for help.

3 Comments

Yes, Kayla, their age difference is never mentioned - I don't think. Unless, I missed it in the stage directions.

Wouldn't it be horrible to have a husband who talked to you like this - or is it endearing?

Ahh....to late 19th century literature.

in regards to your comment about Nora wanting to be "filthy rich"...did you think about the possibility that Nora likes the idea of not having to worry about money because she want to pay off the debt, and she does feel some sort concept of money because she has been secretly working to slowly pay off the debt. Sure, she comes across as very "spendthrift" (as she is labled in the play), but perhaps she isn't as dumb with money as she comes across as being. Hence, the lines...
Nora: ...Whenever Torvald has given me money for new dresses and such things, I have never spent more than half of it; I have always bought the simplest and cheapest things.
Maybe she doesn't waste money as much as we are originally meant to think?

"Nora. No, not only what one needs, but heaps and heaps of money.”

I disagree. I think she wants to be rich.

She got herself into a secret debt so she has no choice but to save up money. I think she'd be more than happy to spend it on herself if she could.

She came across as a bit of an idiot to me. Arrogant, as well. She's all pleased with herself for making a cool business deal like one of the big boys and sneaking around, but she can't handle the repercussions.

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