Study Guide

A Doll's House Marriage

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The main message of A Doll's House seems to be that a true (read: good) marriage is a joining of equals. The play centers on the dissolution of a marriage that doesn't meet these standards. At first the Helmers seem happy... but over the course of the play, the imbalance between them becomes more and more apparent.

By the end, the marriage breaks apart due to a complete lack of understanding. Together in wedlock, Nora and Torvald are incapable of realizing who they are as individuals.

Questions About Marriage

  1. How are ideas of marriage different today than during the time period of the play? How are they similar?
  2. Can the Helmers' marriage be salvaged?
  3. How could the Helmers make their marriage equal?
  4. Is the destruction of the Helmers' marriage a good or bad thing?

Chew on This

The Helmers marriage fell apart due to an imbalance of power.

Ibsen's concept of a true marriage seems to be a union of equals.

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