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The Inner Room

Symbolism, Imagery, Allegory

The stage set-up of Hedda Gabler is important stuff. It’s important to remember that there is both an outer and inner room, with the latter at the back of the stage and sometimes shielded by curtains over the doorway. Critics have pointed out that the inner room increasingly becomes Hedda’s own personal space. When the play begins, the portrait of General Gabler hangs on the wall inside this room. Later, Hedda remarks that her old piano doesn’t fit in the outer drawing room and has it moved to the back room. Of course, this is where Hedda chooses to shoot herself – behind the curtains no less. She retreats from the outer world of practicality into her own private world of aesthetics, hence her own "beautiful" death and the way it is shielded from the world.

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