enemy of the people final paper

Submitted By HEMPHILE
Words: 1114
Pages: 5

One standing alone in a world full of those who hate everything that you stand for, Dr. Stockman is the enemy of his towns’ people that were once his friends. Enemy of the People written by Henrik Ibsen touches on many subjects that were not deemed suitable in the late 1800s. Throughout the novel there is a battle of ethics conflict between Dr. Stockman and his brother Peter Stockman. Each raise their own points on what should be done about the baths but, it is shown that power is once again trying to conquer over the truth. This novel is Ibsen’s way to lash out at all of the corrupt and those who are so easily turned to the side of the corruption. There has been a never ending argument whether Dr. Stockman was right basing his view of the baths on scientific view, was Peter Stockman was right since his thoughts were based on the economic point of view, or was both right. An individual who defies society because of his moral convictions, and consequently suffers for his independent and unbending stand, is not an unfamiliar phenomenon, whether in the annals of human history or in the experience of contemporary societies (Roshwald Gale). Thomas Stockman is much like the author of the book, who is willing to kicked out of the social realm of society and race the cold world alone. Dr. Stockman raises the argument, is he right because he has science on his side but can only focus on shutting down the towns lively hood. He has many on his side his concern is the health of others and does not care how many turn against him or what they try to do to him; he stands firmly and will not change what he believes in. Just like Dr. Stockman, this plays’ view deal with idealism and promotes to take a stand on moral no matter the obvious cost (Howes Gale). A man that is willing to give up his normal life, stand against those who can obviously hurt him but has the evidence from science to prove his findings. “We are making our living by retailing filth and corruption! The whole of our flourishing municipal life derives its sustenance from a lie!”(Henrik 30). He may have had a callous attitude to willingness to sacrifice the wealth of the town, but sticks to his moral of the well being of human beings and is motivated by his compassion for wider humanity (Roshwald Gale). He is a man that has condemned majority rule. Dr. Stockman is a man that has put himself on the pedestal of principles and is right for standing up for his beliefs to the end, even though, the entire town was against him and his own brother was willing to ruin him to save money. Peter Stockman is a man of great power in the town, he is the mayor, chairman of the Baths and a politician. Being a politician that makes Peter Stockman a man of the people, meaning he believes and has power and authority in the town because of that. Without the majority rule Peter would have never been able to win the situation with his brother, he would have been forced to make the changes needed. However, it is meant in the story for Peter to be the antagonist and Dr. Stockman is the protagonist. Peter wanted to handle the problem of the baths in a way that would not make the town or himself lose any money or cause any bad press to be said on the matter. For this he does whatever it takes to keep the people on his side of the matter, that goes for swaying the wealthy his way by saying there would be a tax to even stabbing his brother in the back. "The matter in hand is not simply a scientific one. It is a complicated matter, and has its economic as well as its technical side" (Ibsen 29). Peter only cares for the economy of the town, he wants to keep the problem with the bathes from the town and from the potential vacationers. Without the bathes Peter knows that the town will have higher taxes, people will lose their jobs and force the town into poverty. So he does everything no matter how ruthless and selfish it may seem to save the economy of the