A Glimpse into the Future

     After reading the play, A Doll's House, by Henrik Ibsen and watching the 1973 film version by director Joseph Losey, it amazes me how easily Nora Helmer (Jane Fonda) turns her back on her children. The first thought that came into my mind after seeing this, was how often in today's society that very thing is done to children everywhere.

     A Doll's House was written in 1879. In those times, family was the center of everything, as such is portrayed in this film. Nora lives her life by the rules governed in those times. Nora is a very obedient wife and mother, who lives her life for her husband, Torvald (David Warner), and her children. She seems to ignore her wants and needs for fear of repercussions from Torvald. Nora does everything she is told, as would a child to its parents.

     The decision that Nora makes concerning her departure from her family would be unheard of in those times. Unfortunately in today's world, it is an everyday occurrence. Nora reaches her breaking point. She needs to feel like a person again instead of an object or a possession. I think that most people can agree that they have felt this way one time or another. But why would she make her children suffer through their lives without a mother?

     I think it is easy to say that Nora's decision was an impulse decision. I feel that she did not think through the consequences that will follow. In some ways, I feel that she was being very selfish. Torvald undoubtedly deserves what he receives but not the children. They are the innocents in this story. In some ways, this action by Nora lays the groundwork for similar acts in the future.

     Children today are being made victims by their own parents' actions. The children are being made to suffer for the mistakes parents make. I feel that the loss of family values and the rate of underage juveniles go hand in hand. In earlier generations, did you ever hear of so many children behaving as children do today? How can this be explained? I think that the abandonment of children by a parent is the initial wound in the children's lives. Everything seems to spiral downward after that. Thanks for setting such a bad example, Nora.

Jamie Steffy

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