Henrik Ibsen Biography - MNC Online
Henrik Ibsen | Literary Studies
Both the great dramas for reading, (1866)and (1867), were based on Ibsen's problematicrelationship with his country of birth. Political developments in 1864led him to lose his optimistic belief in his country's future. He evenbegan to doubt whether his countrymen had a historical raison d'êtreas a nation.
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What he had earlier treated as a national problem of identity nowbecame a question of the individual's personal integrity. It was no longersufficient to dwell on an earlier historical era of greatness and focuson the continuity of the nation's life. Ibsen turned away from history,and confronted what he considered the main contemporary problem - a nationcan only rise up culturally by means of the individual's exertion of will."Brand" is mainly a drama with a message that the individualmust follow the path of volition in order to achieve true humanity In addition,this is the only way to real freedom - for the individual, and it follows,for society as a whole.
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Scribe could teach him how a drama's plot should be structured ina logically motivated progression of scenes. Hebbel provided him with anexample of the way drama could be based on life's contemporary dialectics,creating a modern conceptual drama. Hebbel's pioneering work was his conveyanceof the ideologicalconflicts of his day into the theater where he created"a drama of issues" pointing forward. He also knew how the Greektragedy's retrospective technique could be used by a modern dramatist.
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In other words, Ibsen was in close contact with the art of the stagefor a long uninterrupted period. His six years at the theater in Bergen(1851-57) and the following four or five years at the theater in Kristianiafrom 1857 were not easy. But he acquired a sharp eye for theatrical techniquesand possibilities.