Henrik Ibsen - Life Stories, Books, and Links
Biographical Information

Stories about Henrik Ibsen

Selected works by this author

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Picture of Henrik Ibsen, author of A Doll's House; playwright / dramatist; nineteenth century Norwegian Literature and drama
Henrik Ibsen   (1828 - 1906)
Category:  Norwegian Literature
Born:  March 20, 1828
Skien, Norway
Died:  May 26, 1906
Christiana, Norway
Related authors:
George Bernard Shaw, J. M. Barrie
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Henrik Ibsen - LIFE STORIES
3/13/1891     "Nook-Shotten Norwegians"
On this day in 1891, Henrik Ibsen's Ghosts premiered in London, an event so "controversial and epoch-making," says biographer Michael Meyer, that it is now regarded as "one of the most famous of theatrical occasions." Theater historians report that the furor made Ibsen "a household word even among those Englishmen who never went to the theatre or opened a book."
12/21/1879     Playing With A Doll's House
On this day in 1879 Henrik Ibsen's A Doll's House opened in Copenhagen. One critic compared the play to the dropping of "a bomb into contemporary life," and "a death sentence on accepted social ethics"; another described Nora's exit from her house and her gender-roles at the end of Act V as "a door slam heard 'round the world."
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Henrik Ibsen: The Complete Major Prose Plays
by Rolf Fjelde (Translator), Henrik Ibsen
anthology, drama
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by Michael Meyer
The Cambridge Companion to Ibsen
by James McFarlane (Editor)
guide, biography
The Quintessence of Ibsenism
by George Bernard Shaw
literary history
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An extensive guide to the playwright's life and works. Find a a detailed bibliography containing over 18,000 entries, information about radio, film and television productions, book and theatre reviews, literary criticism and analysis, and electronic texts including "A Doll's House," "Hedda Gabler," "An Enemy of the People," and others. Offers background information, scans of original manuscripts, and reviews of early performances for many works. Highly recommended.

""On the whole, When We Dead Awaken may rank with the greatest of the author's work – if, indeed, it be not the greatest. It is described as the last of the series, which began with A Doll's House -– a grand epilogue to its ten predecessors. Than these dramas, excellent alike in dramaturgic skill, characterisation, and supreme interest, the long roll of drama, ancient or modern, has few things better to show."
--- James Joyce
Little Blue Light
Features a brief biography and concise notes on theme, style, and influences. A quick read.

"Ibsen decided to start writing straightforward 'naturalistic' plays in plain language. The first of these was The Pillars of Society in 1877, a play critical of certain aspects of contemporary Norwegian culture, shady business practices and gender inequality. The following year, the controversial contemporary domestic drama, A Doll's House, caused a stir throughout Europe and ushered in the age of modern Realism in theater."
Online Books Page
Find electronic texts of A Doll's House, An Enemy of the People, Ghosts: A Domestic Tragedy in Three Acts, The Lady From the Sea, The Master Builder, Peer Gynt, When We Dead Awaken, and other works.
Online Course Companion
A website for students provides a detailed biography, a critical overview of the playwright's work, bibliography, and links to online resources.

"It was as a dramatic innovator that Ibsen established his reputation, at a time when drama largely meant shallow romances, crude farces, and plays of intrigue with complicated and ludicrous plots. It was as a fierce critic of social norms and stifling hypocrisies that he was celebrated by his early admirers. But it is as the author of powerful dramas that portray universal human concerns, as the creator of complex characters who suffer and endure in their attempts to make sense of their lives, that he transcends merely historical importance and remains a writer whose best works can move and provoke us as much as they did their original audiences."
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March 18, 2018
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