vicing creatures is the major accusation in Nora’s painful account to Torvald of how first her father, and then he, used her for their amusement. . . how she had no right to think for herself, only the duty to accept their opinions. Excluded from meaning anything, Nora has never been subject, only object. (Templeton, Ibsen’s Women 142).
There are examples of women in public and private life that benefit from situations that exist because of the effect of feminist theories, social movements, and political organizations. In Nora’s whole life, she was treated like a doll; too weak to do anything serious, too flimsy to be troubled with real business. She was the wife, mother, and homemaker. The only duties she was perceived as capable of were running home. Many women tried to fill this position of the perfect housewife. Templeton argues that “Ibsen’s contemporaries saw it as a deeply feminist play and would be surprised to read some modern male criticism” (Templeton, Ibsen’s Women73).
According to Templeton, other criticisms of Nora have turned around the reality that Nora commits a crime by copying the papers to get the loan that saves her husband’s life, ignoring the fact that this is an entirely well-intentioned act which is considered a crime because of Nora’s gender. Some critics may argue that feminism has not seen in A Doll’s house, and what we see is actually about human rights. Professor Christopher T. Walsh declares:
A Doll’s House addresses a natural human longing for happiness boosting the individual’s desire for authentic love and self-realization without any place for gender, which means Nora could play a man’s role as well, neglecting any feminist movement. Nora is not happy because, even though Torvald’s kindness cheers her up, she doesn’t love him as a human being. (Walsh, “A Doll’s House: The pursuit of happiness as individuals without gender Feminism or humanism?”1)
However, in the story Nora had an oppressive father, and then later she went to her oppressive husband, Torvald. An argument could also be made that the roles could be inverted. A man could have been grown up by a dictator mother then later on have married a dictator wife. However, I do not think that is true. There are just so many points to support the fact that feminism is a critical important part of Ibsen’s play. It is obvious in the way that Torvald speaks to Nora. We recognize it through the names that he calls her, the fact that he never has a serious conversation with Nora because she is a woman, and she would not understand. Walsh unlike Alfred Adler and other critics demonstrate that there is any clue to conduct the reader into feminist study. He asserts:
A Doll’s House does not imply any kind of sexism and therefore feminism. The different roles the two sexes had at the time did not mean that one was more valuable or worthy than the other. Nora was looking for true self-realization after leaving Torvald. She wanted freedom from Torvald’s fake marriage and to become an individual. (Walsh 2)
Many critics argue that A Doll’s House is feminist because the ideas of gender are always present as a consequence of biological deference between both sexes. In Walsh’s idea, there is no feminism point but there are many differences in roles. They based their marriage on honesty. He justifies his opinions seriously by resorting to many reasons:
One of the reasons of why the play is about humanism and not feminism is that Torvald and Nora could switch roles because both are individuals that long for self-realization and authentic love. Torvald could have had the same change that Nora had even though he is a man. The pressure that society did on married couples of the time is applicable to both sexes exactly the same way. (Walsh 3)
Unlike this belief, there are many questions that can be solved through it. How many women have lived most of their married life in the way that they just tolerate to be a good companion for their husbands and then they get to the points that cannot continue with no personal strength to get a divorce? Joan Templeton replies as following:
He most betrays his ignorance when he perceives as a contradiction the notion that although woman is biologically different from man she is not inferior to him. From the standpoint of logic alone, difference is not inequality; from the standpoint of feminism, this fact is the most crucial in existence. (Templeton,Ibsen’s Women362)
Finally in the view of many critics like Adlerian feminists in term of social interest the protagonist is a woman who tries to reach her rights as a human and as a woman. Ibsen chooses the house as the setting because he wants to show this woman is socially confined. According to Social Interest theory, the ways Nora interact with her husband and others can conduct her toward individual gain or collective goals. On the other hand she is a woman who is deprived of many certain rights, but the only thing that can save her,isunderstanding of herself as a identity with social interest and social life and also the real personality.
1.5.1. Definition of Key Terms
In this thesis there are some key terms that should be explained. The most important one is the term that is defined by Alfred Adler as a psychoanalytic feminism concept that conducts the reader to new view f reading A Doll’s House.
Conscious Motivation: Being conscious is to be aware of one’s environment and existence, thoughts and emotion New studies by neuroscientists, philosophers and psychologists studied to try and understand emotion and its contribution to the functioning of consciousness.When we are conscious of something, we can get into a position where we can solve our problem and at the same time arise with a better solution. Performance in conscious motivation is measured by announcing including instructions; participants are asked to use their perceived or remembered information to announce their results (Schacter, Psychology 46-58).
Femininity: It also called womanliness or womanhood is a set of characteristics, behaviors, and roles associated with girls and women. Femininity is made up of both socially defined and biologically created factors. This makes it distinct from the simple definition of the biological female sex, like women, men, and transgender people can all exhibit feminine characteristics. Behavioral traits considered feminine include gentleness, sympathy, and sensitivity, though traits associated with femininity often vary basing on location and context, and include a variety of social and cultural factors. (Hale Martin; Stephen Edward Finn, Masculinity and Femininity in the MMPI-2 and MMPI-A34-61)
Inferiority and Superiority: Adler argued that all of life’s problems are social problems and that mental health is supported by the courage to declare social interest He viewed each person as a unique individual influenced by primary caregivers, family and community relationships. Individual Psychology emphasizes the creativity of the