Home » , , » The Doll's House: Preface

The Doll's House: Preface

The Doll’s House was written by Katherine Mansfield in the fading years of her life. It was written to address the social injustices she witnessed growing up in New Zealand, a society with a very strict and rigid social class system.

Plot Summary


The Doll’s House is set in New Zealand in the early 1900’s, a time of great social injustice.


The character’s in Katherine Mansfield’s The Doll House are the Burnell sisters, Isabel Keiza and Lottie, all of whom are of a wealthy family, and the Kelveys, Lil and Else who were of a low income family, with a father that was non existent. Other minor characters include Mrs. Hay who gave the Burnell sisters the Doll House and Aunt Beryl.


There are many conflicts within the Doll’s House. The first of which is the most obvious that exists between the Burnell sisters, specifically Keiza and whether or not she should invite the Kelveys to look at the doll house. Another conflict that exists is the conflict between The Kelveys and their classmates, in how they are always being picked on and the constant struggle of the Kelveys to somehow let it go. Both of these conflicts would be man vs. man but there does exist a conflict in the form of man vs nature. This is made evident when the reader sees how the Kelveys are so close and help one another through difficult times despite what early 20th century New Zealand social class may tell them about their insufficiency.


The tone of this story is very child like and naïve, however it covers very complex issues that our society even today.

Authors Purpose:

The purpose is to shed light on the cruelty of social hierarchies. It also shows how a parents influence can shape the way a child thinks, in this case in a negative way.

Share this article :

Post a Comment

Fathimath Sama
Copyright © 2012. Oscar Education - All Rights Reserved