Do women like Nora and men like Torvald from A Doll's House still exist?

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lensor eNotes educator| Certified Educator

As much as women have sought to change their roles in society, advertising, television shows, and movie series have often presented females in subservient positions such as the one in which Nora lives in Ibsen's play.  Certainly, the answer to this question is a subjective one, for it must be based on one's own experiences.  Yet, contemporary ideals of femininity in many countries require that a woman be thin, young, pretty, and willing to subvert her own needs to those of her husband.  Women currently starve themselves to be thin, undergo plastic surgery to look young and pretty, and assume a helpless persona in order to make themselves appealing to men.  Society has taught them that such looks and behaviors are attractive to men.  They also are prone to keep secrets from men, just as Nora did.  Many women even hide purchases from their husbands.

sagetrieb eNotes educator| Certified Educator

This sort of argument would need personal evidence that would derive from your experience--your observations of the world.  Evidence could also consist of the characters you see on TV, for they (are supposed to) represent people in real life. To begin this essay, ask yourself:  what are the concerns of The Doll House? Some of your answers might be: that women who do not work outside the home lack power in the household; that the relationship between a man and wife, even when they love each other, is based on power; that society constructs the role of the husband to be one that has authority over the wife; that traditional roles of men and women in marriage are destructive; that a woman might need to leave her husband and children in order to find her "self" that she loses in marriage.