What is the importance of gestures in Ibsen's Hedda Gabler?

Expert Answers info

M.P. Ossa, M.A. eNotes educator | Certified Educator

briefcaseCollege Lecturer, ESL/TEFL Instructor

bookM.A. from Chapman University

calendarEducator since 2008

write5,666 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, Social Sciences, and Business

When you read the play you will immediately find that, in general, Hedda Gabler has more directions than  A Doll's House. This is mainly because, in typical Ibsen fashion, the woman who drives the plot of the play is atypical. This is a familiar characteristic in Ibsen's plays and the reason behind the need for specific mannerisms and gestures: Ibsen likes to protect his female characters from public scorn.

If you are not familiar with Ibsen, you may want to know that he faced many obstacles during the staging of his plays precisely because of his choice of female main characters. He likes his "ladies" strong, and unconventional..maybe even a bit problematic and controversial. He would say

“a woman cannot be herself in the society of the present day, which is an exclusively masculine society, with laws framed by men and a judicial system that judges feminine conduct from a masculine point of view.”

Yet, that is easier said than done because Ibsen wrote throughout the controversial...

(The entire section contains 2 answers and 599 words.)

Unlock This Answer Now

check Approved by eNotes Editorial

Gracie O'Hara eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2011

write6,895 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, History, and Business

check Approved by eNotes Editorial