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John Gabriel Borkman

The play explores the rise and fall of a man of humble origins – John Gabriel is the son of a miner – who rose to prominence as a banker and financial advisor to the wealthy citizens of his home town and then through greed and ambition is disgraced and brings shame on himself and his family.

In this, as in many of Ibsen's plays, although Borkman is the central character around whom the action revolves, it is the females in his life who have true strength. It is they who recognise reality and control the final outcome of the story. Though apparently bleak the play offers hope for the future and acknowledges that life goes on, carried forward by the next generation.