Hebbel\s plays are often populated by prostitutes and escorts, women who appear to offer sexual services but who are ultimately motivated by something other than simple lust. These characters use their sexuality as a weapon, a way to gain power over men, or to manipulate them for their own ends. In some ways, they are the antithesis of the idealized Escorts in Hebbel’s plays, who are usually chaste and virtuous. The escorts are often presented as tragic figures, forced into their line of work by poverty or circumstance. In Hebbel\s hands, they become complex characters with their own hopes, dreams, and desires. They may be skirting the law or Society\s conventions, but they are fully human nonetheless.