Henry Ford, Inventor of the Model T and Assembly Line.
***Note: The New Webster's Dictionary and Thesaurus defines Stereotype as: "a rigidly conventional expression, idea, character, etc." which in plain English means, a statement made that generalizes a group based on a majority that fall into that group. In this paper Stereotypes are made about both males and females, some may be seen as a "put down" however, they serve no purpose to do such a thing, they only intend to be a basis on which statements about A Doll's House are made. ***
Males and females can be classified into two different species. Deborah Tannen, a linguistics professor at Georgetown University, notes that even as early as the second grade, when she compared boy's and girls' conversation styles, "she felt like she was looking at the discourse of 'two different species'"(Griffin 447). Males and females are similar in a few ways, and they have a symbiotic relationship, but for the most part they are completely different. The body of both males and females work nearly the same, yet males have more of the hormone testosterone and less of the hormone estrogen. As for emotional differences males and females can feel the same emotions, yet they might not be at the same levels. Males and females are also different for the most part; by the ways that they manipulate others to help their own needs and wants. From a physical view, males and females look very similar, however males and female's outward approach to others and actions are very different. In A Doll's House by Henrik Ibsen these differences are prevalent throughout the play.
Generally females show their emotions like one would think a child would, by being angry with themselves and crying about it for attention and because there is nothing else that they can think to do. Males on average are angry at the world around them and they take their aggression out physically. Generally speaking it might seem like females let their emotions out more, but in reality males express their emotions outwardly. Females tend to keep their emotions bundled up until they can privately slowly let them out, or until they can't control them any more. Males tend to do the exact opposite; they let them out right away and them feel better. Males tend to start conflicts or pick out one person or group to battle out a conflict.
Males and females also differ in their manipulation of others. Often males when manipulative are sneaky and one sided, they put on a face and stick with it until it works or until they find a new victim. Male's manipulation towards others can be very violent and physical, where a male puts force onto whomever they are manipulating. Males tend not to stop manipulating others throughout their lives, for the whole basis that a male lives by is competition, and finding any way to reach the top. Generally speaking males reach for larger goals that get them to a higher end goal faster, goals that tend to be more challenging but with the greater reward of that end goal.
Females on the other hand go through what is stereotyped in the three stages of manipulation. In these three stages generally females search for the person's weakness, whom they are manipulating, the stages are innocent/scared, seductive, and finally straight out bitchy. In the first stage they put on their innocent little schoolgirl face in hopes that whoever they are trying to manipulate feels sorry for the "lost puppy look." When that works, females are then cheerful like they are extraordinarily happy and excited, until the get what they want then they run off and indulge in their glory over the other whom they manipulated. However if the innocence does not work they switch to their seductive mode, where they "throw" themselves at the person they are manipulating, teasing them and going to the edge and pulling back slowly until they realize it is not working. By that time they get frustrated not at the other person, but at themselves and their inability to successfully find a weakness. Now they are desperate, and they beg and find any little way to make the other person feel guilty or shameful. When nothing works they isolate themselves from everyone and break down and cry. Unlike males, females do stop manipulating others for a short while until they can carefully pick out a new victim. Females are not throat cutting and competitive like males, but rather they tend to show a weakness then when someone attempts to use that to their advantage they close it up and lash back at that person. Also unlike males, females take baby steps for goals, over a prolonged time period, which will eventually help them. Their goals tend to be less challenging and with smaller rewards, in hopes of having more victories.
All of these traits of males and females tie in to A Doll's House very well. A simple answer how they tie into it is that there are manipulative relationships between all of the characters, and the characters express their frustration and emotions differently. For example Nora is manipulative with all of the males often going through the three stages mentioned earlier, Nora is a good example of female emotions. Krogstad is another character who is manipulative and emotional with Nora and Torvald. Torvald shows a good example of a relationship that is very manipulative. Torvald also shows lots of emotions, specifically about his disbelief and anger with Nora's actions.
Declan Kiberd author of Nora As Rebel, comments on A Doll's House, quoting James Joyce who says that A Doll's House "is to further the emancipation of the FemalesÃ¢â‚¬Â¦ because it concerns the most important relationship possible-that between the man and the woman" (Kiberd 88). The manipulation and emotions in A Doll's House are only done between the different sexes. According to Kiberd, Ibsen originally portrays the position of Nora as a model for all females, living in their own world, which is based purely on feelings, but who changes when she becomes enlightened to living in a man's world, one that lives only by authority.
Nora has a manipulative relationship with Krogstad; she attempts to manipulate him at the same time he manipulates her. The way she manipulates him is by trying to borrow money from him and not have Krogstad tell her husband. Krogstad manipulates her by holding the fact that he could tell Torvald about the borrowed money and the price she owes him. Nora is also manipulative with Torvald, by hiding the fact that she borrowed money by not tell him about it. Nora attempts to be helpful, but ends up just being sneaky about it and waiting until Krogstad tells him about it. Nora seems to manipulate everyone around her into thinking that she is a happy little obedient wife, a "doll," when in reality she is being very rebellious.
Nora's feelings toward the situation fluctuate, at the beginning of the play she doesn't care too much about the things around her; she spends money like she doesn't already have a debt. "HELMER: Still, we mustn't waste money, you know. NORA: Oh Torvald, surely we can waste a little now - just the teeniest bit? Ã¢â‚¬Â¦ HELMER: Ã¢â‚¬Â¦but there will be a whole quarter before I get paid. NORA: Pooh, we can always borrow till then" (Ibsen 148). Like a female she lets her emotions wait until she is in private. However, when Krogstad threatens her with telling Torvald, she begins to act more like a male would, by starting arguments, and blowing up, having big open arguments. Towards the end of the play when Nora knows that Krogstad is going to tell her husband, and that she is going to leave her husband, she seems confident, and she doesn't let her emotions fly off. Nora however, doesn't go back to her brain dead self again; instead she doesn't have any more feeling for the situation, because she is burned out.
Males and females, as shown by A Doll's House, are quite different in the ways that they react to one another. On average males, especially in A Doll's House, seem to try to be more dominant over females however yet, females, in A Doll's House, through their powers of manipulation are able to triumph over males. We also see that males tend to like to start arguments, and often try to show power over those who they communicate with, but we also see that they can be affected by the outcome of their argument's reactions, like Nora's reaction to Torvald's argument. We notice that females don't always have emotions typical to a female, and that they can have emotions more like those of a male. However, in general males will act like males and females will act like females, once in a while they will cross over, but we can say that males and females are two different species.
Ã‚Â· Nora as Rebel, Declan Kiberd - Readings on a Doll's House (87-95)
Ã‚Â· A First Look at Communication Theory, Griffin EM, The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc., New York, Ã‚Â© 1997
Ã‚Â· A Doll's House, Ibsen Henrik, Penguin Books, New York, Ã‚Â©1965
Ã‚Â· A lot of baggage for Nora to carry, Loyd Rose, Washington Post, Sun Apr 20 1997 Page G02
Ã‚Â· Growing up in A Doll's House, Monsen Gerard, Dec 11, 1998 http://www.idiom.com/~gmonsen/englishpaper/
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