Character Sketch of Nora in A Doll’s House

Nora, a dutiful mother and a wife, occupies major part of the play putting others before herself. She thinks little of how her act of forgery and debt to Krogstad affect her personally, opting instead to stress about how they could impact the lives of her husband and youngsters. Even when she plans to kill herself, it’s not to hide her shame but rather because she thinks that if she is alive then Torvald will ruin himself in trying to guard her. In a similar vein, Mrs. Linde admits that, without a husband or any relations to worry for, she feels that her life is pointless. Therefore, both women find a way of meaning in their lives through serving others and performing the caring, obedient role that society requires of them. During the play, however, Nora learns that prioritizing her duty as a wife and mother cannot bring real happiness. She realizes when it becomes clear that Torvald would never have sacrificed his reputation to guard her, that while she thought she was sacrificing herself to guard her love, actually no such love existed, and indeed the structure of society makes the love she had alleged to be an impossibility. She, therefore, decides to go away from him to develop a way of her own identity. The play ends with Nora choosing to place herself as a private before society’s expectations of her.

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