The individual struggle to choose between acting in accordance with one’s own free will and commitment to societal norms: [Essay Example], 1005 words GradesFixer
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The individual struggle to choose between acting in accordance with one’s own free will and commitment to societal norms

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Quote 1

Manders and Oswald are discussing the latter’s experience with his life in artistic circles, coming to a disagreement over the young people, who due to their lack of money cannot afford to marry, but nevertheless lead a life of a married couple.

I have never noticed anything particularly irregular about the life these people lead.

I have never witnessed any immoral action on part of these people, when it comes to their life as a family.

Oswald does not approve of shunning the people who live in so called “irregular marriages”, because he understands that they cannot force themselves not to love each other just because they cannot afford to marry, which portrays him as a free-spirited person.

Quote 2

Manders and Mrs. Alving are discussing the fact that Mrs. Alving hid her late husband’s problematic behavior from Oswald, in order not to traumatize him.

Do not despise ideals, Mrs. Alving; they will avenge themselves cruelly. Take Oswald’s case: he, unfortunately, seems to have few enough ideals as it is; but I can see that his father stands before him as an ideal.

Do not despise ideals, Mrs. Alving; the consequences of this will make you regret your actions. Take Oswald’s case: he, unfortunately, seems to have few enough ideals as it is; but I believe that he sees his father as a moral ideal.

Manders believes that the ideals stand higher than the truth, because despite acting upon them can be considered making up delusions, things will stay ordered and acceptable. That proves him to be quite narrow-minded.

Quote 3

Manders disagrees with Mrs. Alving over her calling herself a coward for not telling Oswald the truth about his father.

You call it “cowardice” to do your plain duty? Have you forgotten that a son ought to love and honour his father and mother?

This is not “cowardice” you are talking about, this is simply your duty. A son must love and honour his father and mother, as they are his blood.

Manders believes that nothing should be able to break the bonds of a son and his father, especially considered that he thinks the father fills the role of a moral authority for the son. Thus, he dismisses Mrs. Alvings emotional struggle in favour of making things look right.

Quote 4

Mrs. Alving and Manders discuss the possibility of marriage between Oswald and Regina. C. If I weren’t such a pitiful coward, I should say to him, ”Marry her, or make what arrangement you please, only let us have nothing underhand about it”.

If I were able to dismiss the inevitable social disapproval, which this marriage would lead to, I should say to him to do what he will with their relationship, only not to hide anything from us.

Mrs. Alving is in a state of inner conflict. She knows exactly what she should do, but that does not correspond with her true wishes. She understands that she will not let herself act upon those wishes, which only makes the struggle worse.

Quote 5

Mrs. Alving disagrees with the comment, which Manders made about the books she read.

Yes – when you forced me under the yoke of what you called duty and obligation; when you lauded as right and proper what my whole soul rebelled against as something loathsome. It was then that I began to look into the seams of your doctrines. I wanted only to pick at a single knot; but when I had got that undone, the whole thing ravelled out. And then I understood that it was all machine-sewn.

It was you who forced me to think and act in terms of duty and obligation; I hated every last bit of it. That made me think deeper about what you were preaching, which led me to a conclusion that all of this is merely artificial.

Mrs. Alving reveals that Manders influenced her life greatly, and that was not necessarily positive. In my view, she is outraged and disappointed in the outcome of Manders’ “guidance”.

Conclusion

In my opinion, the play depicts the toxic influence of constantly stepping over one’s own principles and wishes for the sake of some abstract “duty”. Mrs. Alving put up with her husband’s adultery for the sake of their son. She kept the truth from Oswald as best she could, only to face his frustration and untimely death. In the end, everything she valued crumbled before her very eyes.hen that I began to look into the seams of your doctrines. I wanted only to pick at a single knot; but when I had got that undone, the whole thing ravelled out. And then I understood that it was all machine-sewn.” (626)

Yes – when you forced me under the yoke of what you called duty and obligation; when you lauded as right and proper what my whole soul rebelled against as something loathsome. It was then that I began to look into the seams of your doctrines. I wanted only to pick at a single knot; but when I had got that undone, the whole thing ravelled out. And then I understood that it was all machine-sewn.

It was you who forced me to think and act in terms of duty and obligation; I hated every last bit of it. That made me think deeper about what you were preaching, which led me to a conclusion that all of this is merely artificial.

Mrs. Alving reveals that Manders influenced her life greatly, and that was not necessarily positive. In my view, she is outraged and disappointed in the outcome of Manders’ “guidance”.

Conclusion

In my opinion, the play depicts the toxic influence of constantly stepping over one’s own principles and wishes for the sake of some abstract “duty”. Mrs. Alving put up with her husband’s adultery for the sake of their son. She kept the truth from Oswald as best she could, only to face his frustration and untimely death. In the end, everything she valued crumbled before her very eyes.

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GradesFixer. (2019, March, 27) The individual struggle to choose between acting in accordance with one’s own free will and commitment to societal norms. Retrived May 29, 2020, from https://gradesfixer.com/free-essay-examples/the-individual-struggle-to-choose-between-acting-in-accordance-with-ones-own-free-will-and-commitment-to-societal-norms/
"The individual struggle to choose between acting in accordance with one’s own free will and commitment to societal norms." GradesFixer, 27 Mar. 2019, https://gradesfixer.com/free-essay-examples/the-individual-struggle-to-choose-between-acting-in-accordance-with-ones-own-free-will-and-commitment-to-societal-norms/. Accessed 29 May 2020.
GradesFixer. 2019. The individual struggle to choose between acting in accordance with one’s own free will and commitment to societal norms., viewed 29 May 2020, <https://gradesfixer.com/free-essay-examples/the-individual-struggle-to-choose-between-acting-in-accordance-with-ones-own-free-will-and-commitment-to-societal-norms/>
GradesFixer. The individual struggle to choose between acting in accordance with one’s own free will and commitment to societal norms. [Internet]. March 2019. [Accessed May 29, 2020]. Available from: https://gradesfixer.com/free-essay-examples/the-individual-struggle-to-choose-between-acting-in-accordance-with-ones-own-free-will-and-commitment-to-societal-norms/
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