There have always been fundamental differences between the mentalities of the male and female sexes. At one time, women were considered as a possession of the father or husband. Women were denied participation in public life, they had restricted access to education, and they weren't legally allowed to own property. This oppression of women did not prevent them from fighting for, and obtaining, equal rights. It seems that women followed the laws created by men as long as they didn't conflict with what women believed. When there was a conflict between the laws of men and belief’s of women, then the laws of men were ignored. This is clearly illustrated in the two dramas, Antigone and A Doll’s House.
In the drama, "Antigone", the story revolves around, a young, strong-willed and defiant female, Antigone. She disobeys the order imposed by a male, the King of Thebes, which stated that Polynices should be left, unburied and unmourned, and anyone who broke this decree would suffer death as a punishment. She reacted unselfishly, opposing all that represented power in her world, in order that her brother gain peace and harmony in his after life. She justifies her actions by stating that she was bound to comply with the undying laws of right and wrong in spite of any human laws. It is her belief that Creon's law is inferior to that of the Gods. Therefore by breaking the law she felt it was her obligation to bury her own flesh and blood, and to perform the necessary ceremonial burial rituals. She was accomplishing the doctrine her God Zeus had instilled in her. When Antigone was confronted with her "crime", she denied nothing. As a result she m...
... middle of paper ...
... of Youth/ A Doll's House/ The Lady From the Sea. Trans. Peter Watts. England: Clays Ltd., 1965.
Jaeger, Werner. "Sophocles' Mastery of Character Development." In Readings on Sophocles, edited by Don Nardo. San Diego, CA: Greenhaven Press, 1997.
Salomé, Lou. Ibsen's Heroines. Ed. and trans. Siegfried Mandel. Redding Ridge: Black Swan, 1985.
Templeton, Joan. "The Doll House Backlash: Criticism, Feminism, and Ibsen." PMLA (January 1989): 28-40.
A student may wish to begin his paper with the quotes below to create a stronger opening:
Women observe the law as far as there is no conflict with what they believe, while men look at it as an absolute.
"There are two kinds of spiritual laws, two kinds of conscience, one in a man and another altogether different in a woman. They do not understand each other." (Foreword to, "Four Major Plays").
Need Writing Help?
Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.Check your paper »
- A Character Comparison: Nora Vs. Antigone In the novels A Doll's House and Antigone, Ibsen and Sophocles respectively create two lead female characters, Nora and Antigone, who confront society's expectations of women in fundamentally different ways. Nora goes against the grain of middle class society by first forging her father's signature and then deceiving her husband, Torvald, throughout their marriage; Antigone, on the other hand, openly challenges and defies the rule of men, including her uncle and King of Thebes, Creon.... [tags: Doll's House Antigone Sophocles]
1855 words (5.3 pages)
- Similarities in Antigone and A Doll's House Ibsen's A Doll's House has been called the first modern play. The play was considered "revolutionary" because it broke several "molds" which had endured for centuries. Incredibly, much of what was considered "revolutionary" first appeared in Sophocles' play, Antigone - one of the first plays in existence. In merely looking at the surface, one notices right away that both plays are significant in that they avoid the social temptation of using a man as a protagonist.... [tags: comparison compare contrast essays]
686 words (2 pages)
- “The Empowered Woman, she moves through the world with a sense of confidence and grace. Her once reckless spirit now tempered by wisdom. Quietly, yet firmly, she speaks her truth without doubt or hesitation and the life she leads is of her own creation.” --Excerpt from ‘The Empowered Woman’ by Sonny Carroll In my mind, Sonny Carroll’s poem perfectly represents what an empowered woman should be; firm, determined and able to stand on her own feet. The characters of Nora and Antigone, from Henrik Ibsen’s ‘A Doll’s House’ and Sophocles’ ‘Antigone’ respectively, completely fit my description of ‘the empowered woman’.... [tags: The Empowered Woman, Sonny Carroll]
1263 words (3.6 pages)
- In the plays Antigone and A Doll's House, the playwrights discuss gender roles and how they relate to the characters in each individual play. Antigone, by Sophocles, follows a young girl who defies a law issued by King Creon against burying her brother, who fought against their town in the recent war. Creon orders her to be executed, but she ends up committing suicide. In A Doll's House, by Henrik Ibsen, a wife named Nora takes out a loan by herself, unacceptable for a woman during that time period, and tries to appease the lender who threatens to reveal her loan.... [tags: compare contrast comparison]
902 words (2.6 pages)
- Marlo Thomas says, ‘‘One of the things about equality is not just that you be treated equally to a man, but that you treat yourself equally to the way you treat a man.” Antigone, written by Sophocles, and A Doll’s House, written by Henrik Ibsen, are two plays about two women who defy the rules of society. In Antigone, an ancient Greek play, the girl breaks the king’s law in favor of the gods’ law by giving her brother, Polynices, a proper burial. In the end, Antigone dies because of her behavior, but not before she shows how strong she is when she stands up to Creon.... [tags: compare contrast comparison]
1508 words (4.3 pages)
- Conflict Between Individual Morals and State Laws in Antigone and A Doll's House Mother, should I trust the government? Or should I trust myself? This dilemma is a common one in a great deal of literature. In Antigone and A Doll’s House, the main theme is the question of whether one should be true to oneself or true to one’s state or society. Should Nora (in A Doll’s House) and Antigone (in Antigone) “follow the rules” and do what the state and society want them to do or should they follow their own consciences? Both plays address the conflict between individual morals and state laws, obedience and disobedience, and understanding oneself. Antigone s... [tags: comparison compare contrast essays]
1471 words (4.2 pages)
- In my mind, Sonny Carroll’s poem perfectly represents what an empowered woman should be; firm, determined and able to stand on her own feet. The characters of Nora and Antigone, from Henrik Ibsen’s ‘A Doll’s House’ and Sophocles’ ‘Antigone’ respectively, completely fit my description of ‘the empowered woman’. As inspiring figures, they left me wondering how they maintained their identities even in their patriarchal societies. What touched my heart the most is the way they fight for what they feel is moral and just instead of following what society dictates.... [tags: Female Empowerment, Protagonists]
1027 words (2.9 pages)
- A recent study reported that 6.7% of the top earners of Fortune 500 Companies are women. This number can seem low and discouraging to modern eyes. However, this statistic would probably seem an unimaginable leap forward through the eyes of female characters in historical fiction. Henrik Ibsen, the author of A Doll’s House, offers a glimpse into the restrictions on women in the 1880’s, when the book was written. These include limited opportunities for expression, personal fulfillment, and free will in a male-dominated society.... [tags: compare contrast comparison]
1417 words (4 pages)
- The music group, Aqua, once sang in their song, “Barbie Girl,” “I’m a Barbie girl, in a Barbie world. Life in plastic, it’s fantastic.” Aqua’s lyrics symbolize the role women had to play in the 18th century. Women were expected to perform like perfect human beings, and put a smile on their faces regardless of the situation. They were expected to follow the rules at all times and submit to men in an instance. Antigone, written by Sophocles, and A Doll’s House, written by Henrik Ibsen, demonstrate the interaction and roles with men and women during the 18th century.... [tags: compare contrast comparison]
1149 words (3.3 pages)
- Duties of the Individual in Antigone and A Doll's House The main theme that can be seen in both plays, Antigone and A Doll's House, is the duty to oneself as opposed to the duty to the state or to society. Should the two women, Nora in A Doll's House, and Antigone in Antigone, do what the state and society wishes them to do or should they follow their own conscience. Both plays focus on the conflict between individual laws and the state law, disobedience and obedience, and understanding oneself.... [tags: comparison compare contrast essays]
1454 words (4.2 pages)