Hedda Is The Female Protagonist Of Henrik Ibsen 's `` Hedda Gabler ``

1923 Words Jun 9th, 2015 8 Pages
Hedda is the female protagonist of Henrik Ibsen’s play, Hedda Gabler. She is a woman who is torn by the conflicting obligations of the social world and the internal self. As a 19th century aristocratic woman, her role in society is strictly in the domains of the home. However, as an individual, Hedda yearns to explore her power, potential, and her capability to take action. These two obligations, the obligation to society and the obligation to self, ultimately clash as Hedda pushes their conventions. Her manipulation of Lovborg and her act of suicide are deeds of defiance against the societal expectations of a polite, reserved, and delicate woman. Although her behavior is rash and destructive, the audience can respect her passionate resolve in an oppressive society. Ultimately, her powerful conviction to gain liberation defines her as a feminist protagonist whose progressive actions in life, and bold choice of death, embody the true definitions of freedom, free will, and power.
Lovborg’s reappearance in Hedda’s life offers her power and excitement, two qualities that she lacks in a male-dominated society. When Lovborg enters, he addresses her with reverence and familiarity. He softly exclaims, “Hedda Gabler!” (Ibsen II). The use of her maiden name and his gentle adoration suggests the memory of a past, passionate relationship, one in which Hedda was comfortable. However, this familiar addressal threatens Hedda’s sense of duty and individuality. Ibsen specifies his intent in…

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