Representation of a person or other creatures is whatis defined as characterization. Characterization may be established throughqualities, appearance, dialogue, and someone’s actions. In the play “A Doll’sHouse,” Torvald Helmer is a character who is stimulating and makes the gamemore enjoyable to the audience. Torvald is Nora’s husband. Torvald thinks thatdue to his new position at the bank he now gains authority as a husband toNora. He handles his wife Nora as a child in a way that is kind and unkind aswell. He views Nora as inferior and does not treat him as an equal either. Hesees her as a doll (plaything) that he can get teas wherever he feels like it.
Despite all this Torvald highly admires Nora. He is more concerned about hisstatus and place in the society hence allowing his feelings to be swayed hardlyas he is afraid of scorn by the members of the community.Torvald is a shallow man compared to the character ofNora; his role is just like a thin foil paper. He appears as a plausible kindof a man, to be the head of the family in the contemporary society. He isdepicted as a proud product of a middle-class husband. He acts as a well-constructed specimen in the community.
He feels that he is the source ofshelter for Nora all her life and to her, he means everything in the world. ToNora, Torvald represents the world of both business and men. Whatever Tolvaldstands for in the society does not concern her because it is not part of herhousebound life. According to HenrikIbsen Torvald is a representative of all men refusing social ills.Torvald is a victim of his narrow-mindedness in thesociety. He continually seeks sympathy instead of blame. Ibsen drives home the qualitiesof this character by referring to him as personal decadence. When a man hasmistaken in his values, then the fault is upon his social life.
Torvald seesNora as a sex object that is decorated with ornaments. He adores his woman inCapri fisher dresses to maintain his fantasies.Helmer is the least admirable character in the play “ADoll’s House” by Ibsen. He is depicted as a sexist fool.
More depth of his injustice is evident whenhe hides from Nora’s father. This was because there was a slow promotion in thebureau. The reason as to this is because the intimate co-workers were alreadyaware of his doings.
Luckily the management failed to prosecute him.Torvaldmotivates Nora to dance for him to arouse his sexual desires. Ibsen depictsthis as an incest marriage since her husband takes advantage of her childishand immature actions. Nora did not change her father’s tutelage withoutemotional change. It is through this act of perversion Ibsen draws a characterreprehensible to the lay audience. Torvald’s moral decay made his family live alife full of lies about his dirty secrets. Despite his desire for his wife, henever knew how to love her as a person, but he saw her as a child. He knew howto trick to win her affection so that she would never suspect about his darkpast.
Torvald is unwilling to face his dishonest nature. Tocover up all his past doings he puts all the blame to his wife and her familyas well. Long before everything his desire for Nora over-powered his quest foreconomic and social status. His desire for her has today changed. Nothing canchange his attitude even when she tries using her “little tricks”. Helmer usesa lot of money to purchase his clothing and this forces Nora to secretly workto be able to buy clothing for her children. After spending many yearsstraggling as a mere lawyer now this sacrifice has paid him as he is the nowthe manager of the savings bank.
A distinguishable rank that would notaccommodate a person with a past of dishonesty.This character has never been able to engage in aserious conversation involving his wife. Is it because he did not want thesubject of her father? Or is it that he was avoiding her childishness? The onlyway he could deal with his wife Nora is as a Doll because he was afraid tohandle her as a person because he did not want his moral failures to becomeknown. At the end of the first act, he said: “An atmosphere of lies like thatinfects and poisons the whole life of a home.” He cast a blind eye from thetruth as he talks about the Krogstad’s crime he is focused on renewing himself.Does Torvald know men need to make sacrifices for their families repeatedlyjust like women? If he can’t train Nora on becoming a good wife, can he becomesuch as a man? Nils Krogstad can accept his crooked past as he tried to make afortune through forgery, but Helmer is hesitant to come to terms with his pastmistakes.Helmer is not fond of his three children, and he isnot interested spending time with them.
We once heard him say about his kids,”unbearable to anyone except mothers.” According to his traditional believes onmarriage he is very loving and affectionate towards Nora despite treating heras an object, a pet, a doll, and something of pleasure. At the end of the play,his friendship with Dr. Rank is discovered to be nothing but a façade, Torvaldpretends to be hurt by the death of Dr.
Rank, but deep inside he is relievedwhen his friend dies. When he discovers the debt that Nora had, he digs deeperto know about it and ensures that his reputation is intact.Torvald is only concerned about her status and onlydesires to be treated as a superior. He is obsessed with class and appearances.
When Nora threatens to leave him, he calls her mad and says she is behavinglike a stupid child. When he realizes that she is severe Torvald promises tochange to stop her from leaving. Nora finally exits the play at the end despiteher husband’s unfair treatment. Did Torvald love her or it was just in herthinking?