In the literature review of title of Dolls House represents the message of women’s place in a male society, that Ibsen has intended to pass on to his readers via play. It is indeed a symbolically noteworthy title. While looking at it closely, it has two symbols in it, one is a doll and the other one is the house.
Nora as a Doll
With the doll, the very first impression comes up and that is about Nora. Here, Nora acts like a doll, apparently. From the house, the initial expression is that the house belongs to Helmer. As the play moves forward, the idea comes up that the word ‘doll’ in the title is an ironic gesture. With the ‘doll’, there is an indication of obedience, prettiness, and a feminine personality that is present in Nora. Helmer, as a husband belongs to the Victorian era, shows the attitude of a domineering one. For him, Nora is some playful object that is for performing and offer enjoyment.
Helmer’s behavior with Nora
The treatment of Helmer with Nora is more like of with some child. He does not allow her to eat sweets and calls her by pet names. In the text, we have observed that he used to call her my pretty little pet, my little skylark, my little squirrel, etc. At one place, he told her that she cannot sing if her rhythm got dirtied by the lies just like a bird. He controls Nora like a perfect doll that can sing, dance, and dress well. Nora is obliged to do all this so that she could be a doll for Helmer and this will be his Doll’s House that is all about being faultless. All she has to do is to comply with his likes and dislikes as a puppet. In the overall play, the objectification of a living thing can be observed clearly. She does not seem to have any emotions, freedom, and desire of her own. Helmer was into controlling her sentiments and beliefs.
Doll’s House fragile nature
The literature review of titleThe Dolls House also signifies its fragile nature because that way, it cannot have a long life. The house has a weak state that is easy to break with a slightest blow. Just like happened in the case of Nora’s step in order to secure his husband. In real, she ended up losing her everything. It certainly depicts that how everything was placed onto the weak shoulders of Nora. Whereas, she had no voice or strength. Nora has mentioned towards the end of the play that she used to be a doll of her father before marriage.Now that in her marriage, she has been Helmer’s doll for eight years.
Mrs Linde’s thought of Nora as a Doll
Another character Mrs Linde also point out towards Nora about her being unable to understand the hardships of life. She believed that she had a father to support her. She also took her for a dependent doll that cannot even move without anyone support. Mrs Linde taunted her that she cannot compromise on her comfortable life and do not have any of her potential or dignity. This also provides us with the literature review of title of Dolls house.
The fact is Nora is conscious of all the limitation imposed on her by this society and her husband; she also wants to be a real person who could have her own personality, identity, and choices. Nora also said at one point he had played with her as she is his doll.
Doll’s House as a cage
The Doll’s House is a ‘house’ not home that belongs to Torvald Helmer. A place where he gives shelter to everyone, but not the genuine ease that a home offers. He has hold of the house as well as of the doll. That house is like a bird cage for his doll. The house also depicts the restraint on Nora’s liberty and viewpoint.
From the beginning, Nora is seen engaged and content in her home by doing things for it and feeling secure inside it. As soon as she realized that her dear husband, whom she fantasized to do miracles for her is unable to act so and that she would be living in it for the sake of show-off only, she decided to leave that ‘home’ and it becomes merely a ‘house’. The home turns out to be a cage for her from where she felt to be flying away.
The literature review of title of Dolls House reflects the text of the play from the beginning of Nora being delusional about her doll to her awakening and walking out of the house that was never a home.
Read about The Theatre of the Absurd.
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