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Dutiful Characters of Ibsen and Sophocles

Nora of Henrik Ibsen’s A Doll’s House, and Antigone of Antigone (by Sophocles) have all had circumstances pitted against them, yet within these unfavourable circumstances they have duties to perform. Their constraints as women or as people whose destinies are governed by fate have caused them to be without pleasing options in their situations—and through the performance of their duties fate often does its work. They have both acted in ways that cause them to be viewed as the dutiful characters in their stories. Where there have been successes, the achievement of their goals against odds reveals them as hardworking characters who shift to accommodate and adjust to the vicissitudes of life, and who are able to defy hardship and…