A Doll??™s House: Symbols
Symbols are commonly used to get a reader??™s interest while reading a story. In Henrik Ibsen??™s play, A Doll??™s House, many symbols are used to represent an idea or concept. An important symbol that is used in this play is, New Year??™s Day. The New Year represents Nora??™s new life she is about to begin by herself.
A Doll??™s House setting is set during the holidays. Both Nora and Torvald are eager for the start of the New Year that is soon approaching. Torvald will start his new job at the bank, and he looks forward to the extra money the job will bring him. Torvald isn??™t the only person anticipating him to start the new job. Nora is very exited because with the extra money, she will be able to repay Krogstad. Because of this new income, you can assume that the Helmer family will be able to live up to the expectations that are required by society.
Nora, the protagonist, looks forward to the New Year. Nora is ready to begin a new chapter in her life by herself. She has been a ???doll??? her whole life and wants to do things for herself. But in order to do this she leaves her husband and tells him, ???I have to be by myself if I am to find out about myself and about all the other things too. So I can??™t stay here with you any longer.??? (pg.950) Nora wants to be able to figure out things on her own and not have other people influence her decisions, like they have been all these years. She comes to realize that her whole life has been a lie. She realizes that responsibilities for her are more important. In the closing scene, Nora slams the door on not just Torvald but on everything that happened in her past. It took time to evolve into a new person, but after she did she became a person who could not stand to be demoralized by Torvald any longer. Nora says, “Ive been your wife-doll here, just as at home I was Papas doll-child.” (pg. 949)
Throughout the course of the play, the circumstances that Nora and Torvald face indicate that they must change their ideas about what the New Year will represent. Both Nora and her husband must change their respective ways of life and face the changes that correspond with these new lifestyles they are about to begin.
Nora isn??™t the only character that is beginning a new chapter in their life. Both Krogstad and Kristine are reborn as well. Both these characters are ???shipwrecked??? and are looking to get a fresh start in their lives. Both of them view their new love affair as a chance for recovery. Krogstad hopes that this will increase his status in the community, and that Christines influence will make him a better person. Christine is ecstatic that she will have someone to work for. She once again has purpose in her life. Every character is affected with the coming of the New Year.
Ibsen used many other symbols throughout this play. He used the New Year to symbolize Nora??™s new beginning as an individual. Everyone will encounter change in their lives at one point or another just like Nora did. You may think change is bad but in the end it may be what you needed all along.
A Doll??™s House: Symbols