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Word Count: 1,581
Henrik Ibsen portrays a microcosm of nineteenth century Norwegian society in his play Hedda Gabler Hedda the protagonist exhibits a mixture of masculine and feminine traits due to her unique upbringing under General Gabler and the social mores imposed upon her However although this society venerates General Gabler because of his military status his daughter Hedda is not tolerated due to her non-conformity to the accepted gender stereotypes Heddas gender-inverted marriage to Jorgan Tesman her desire for power and her use of General Gablers pistols are unacceptable in her society and motif of One doesnt do such a thing that is alluded to during the play and expounded upon Heddas death that shows that Heddas uncertain stance between masculine and feminine gender roles and their associated traits is not tolerated by her society Ibsen employs a reversal of traditional gender roles within Hedda and Jorgen Tesmans marriage to emphasises Heddas masculine traits Hed da displays no emotion or affection towards her husband Jorgen This appearance of indifference is a trait that is usually common to men Tesman - My old morning shoes My slippers lookI missed them dreadfully Now you should see them Hedda Hedda - No thanks it really doesnt interest me In another gender role reversal Hedda displays a financial awareness which her husband Jorgen does not posses Although Brack corresponds with Tesman about his honeymoon travels he corresponds with Hedda concerning the financial matters This is a role that is usually reserved for men Hedda does not only display traits which are definitively masculine or feminine she also objects to and often defies the conventions established for her gender by society She rejects references to her pregnancy as a reminder of her gender Tesman - Have you noticed how plump Heddas grown and how well she is How much shes filled out on our travels Hedda - Oh be quiet Hedda is remin ded not only of her feminine role of mother
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