The Love of Money

         A commonly misquoted verse is "The love of money is the root of all evil." Money is so important that all cultures have developed a monetary system in order to trade goods and services. However, when the need of having more money becomes something that rules your life, you lose control of all other things in your life. In A Doll's House, written in 1879 by Henrik Ibsen and filmed in 1973 by Patrick Garland, there were several characters that let money control some aspect of their lives.

         Torvald (Anthony Hopkins) was a very proud man. He would have died before borrowing money from someone. Even when he got a job as a bank manager, he still was very careful with his money. He let the fear of being in debt to someone rule the way he thought about money. His fear flared his anger when he found out about his wife's loan, which ultimately ended his happy marriage.

         His wife, Nora (Claire Bloom), on the other hand, seemed to want to buy many things and spend money unwisely. She had taken out a loan behind Torvald's back and was desperately trying to repay the loan without his knowledge. Nora's secret eventually destroyed their marriage, causing her to leave her husband.

         Krogstad (Denholm Elliott), the character who had loaned Nora the money, loved money. Earlier in his life, he had secretly done something with money, much like Nora. The storyline does not reveal exactly what he had done in the past, but it had earned him a bad reputation, which he is forever trying to overcome. Krogstad is forced to live differently because of his past actions.

         Mrs. Linde (Anna Massey) was also a lover of money. She had loved Krogstad; yet, instead of being happy with a poor man, she had married someone else for his money. She had been thinking of her smaller brothers and how expensive it would have been for her to take care of them. Eventually her husband had died, leaving her nothing. She had been forced to work hard in order to afford her food and bills. Mrs. Linde had let the love of money overcome her love for Krogstad, therefore causing her life to be miserable.

         All of the characters have let money control them. Torvald was afraid of owing money to anyone. Nora lived in fear that her husband would find out about her borrowing the money. Krog lived a lowly life because of his past mistakes, continuously striving for a better life. Mrs. Linde lived a hard life because she married for money instead of love. All these characters' lives were ruined in some way by money. Does that mean money is bad?--definitely not. But when the love of it rules someone's life, it can truly make a person miserable.

Ben Hocker

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