Why Not Stay?

         In the 1879 play, A Doll's House, by Henrik Ibsen, Nora is under complete control of her husband, Torvald Helmer. Torvald acts as if she is an ignorant child, but it seems to me that she has helped to set her life up this way. She plays little teasing games with him to get what she wants, and this helps him to know that he is in control of her. If she does not like having her life controlled, then she should not act as though she has no mind of her own. She should not have left. She should have stayed and shown Torvald her true self and made him have to live with that because I think that he really did care about her; he just did not comprehend what she was capable of.

         She obviously had many desirable traits. Dr. Rank, for instance, was infatuated with her and listened whenever she spoke. He even expressed his love for her, not to mention that he clearly demonstrated a sexual interest in her in the 1973 film version, directed by Patrick Garland. Dr. Rank, played by Ralph Richardson, clearly appreciated Nora (Claire Bloom) intellectually, emotionally, and physically because, when she was with him she did not play a child. She acted natural, which is the way she should have been around Torvald (Anthony Hopkins).

         Nora should have stayed because she is too naive to try to make it on her own, even with Christine (Anna Massey) possibly helping her out. I do not know where Nora thought that she would go; but for someone who has always relied other people's money, she surely cannot live the lifestyle that she wants if she is on her own. She could barely make the monthly payments for the vacation. She had gotten herself into this mess, and running out of the situation is not the best option for her. She needs Torvald just as much as he needs her; and they need to learn that, together.

Adrienne Dumke

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