A Doll's House Questions and Answers
by Henrik Ibsen

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What's wrong with the marriage of Nora and Torvald in A Doll's House?

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The primary issue with Nora and Torvald's marriage concerns the fact that it is not based on equality and honesty but is instead founded on deception and control. Although Torvald is a responsible husband and father, he lacks respect for his wife and views her as his possession. Torvald does not treat Nora as his intellectual equal and continually refers to her using pet names like "squirrel," "lark," and "featherbrain." Torvald also believes that Nora would be lost without him and views himself as her guardian and protector. He is extremely demeaning towards Nora and controls nearly every aspect of her life.

Towards the beginning of the play, Nora is content playing the role of "doll" in Torvald's home and is primarily focused on pleasing him. She does not desire independence and simply wishes to pay off her debt to Krogstad in order to avoid conflict with her husband.

Nora also harbors a secret from her husband by hiding the fact that she committed forgery to borrow the money that saved...

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