According to Nora, even though men refuse to sacrifice their integrity, “hundreds of thousands of women have.” (Ibsen, 1879) Nora had to leave the penniless Krogstad and marry Torvald in order to support her mother and two brothers. Torvald is condescending towards Nora and the dominant partner in their marriage. Nora hides a loan from him because she is aware that Torvald could never accept the fact that his wife had helped save his life. She also has to work secretly to pay off the loan. Nora’s deception and the attitudes of Torvald and society make Nora fall a victim to Krogstad’s blackmail. Nora finally decides to walk out of the marriage leaving her children. Nora fears that she may be corrupting the children and feels that leaving the children with the nanny is in their best interest.
The main theme of the play is that when a society fails to function in a right way and when men dominate and oppress women, women are reduced to mere objects. The title of the play itself suggests this. Nora is nothing but a doll in her house. Another theme is that there can be no pretences in a marriage.
Ibsen in order to make the play realistic wrote the dialogue in a simple, middle-class, everyday language instead of the elegant, haughty language of romantic plays. The dialogue is simple yet powerful and succeeds in revealing the human psyche. And the most important element of the play is that practically every object in the play be it the Christmas tree or Noras clothing are symbols that emphasize Ibsens theme.
One symbol that keeps recurring throughout the play is the Christmas tree. The Christmas tree, which is used for decorative purpose during Christmas, symbolizes here the position of Nora in her house. The Christmas tree is present in the background of every scene and Ibsen succeeds in creating an undeniable association between the tree and Nora. Nora like the tree is only decorative, as was the case with