Feminist Analysis Of Susan Glaspell's Trifles

1554 Words 6 Pages
Feminist Analysis of “Trifles” Set around the scene of a murder, Susan Glaspell’s twentieth century play “Trifles” is an early feminist drama that explores the gender roles set in place by society, especially in the time period written. The plot revolves around the case of a women, Mrs. Wright, who has killed her husband, John Wright. While male characters are trying to find motive behind the murder, it is actually their wives, who are belittled throughout the play, that solve the case but ultimately keep the truth to themselves. Although undermined and oppressed by the male characters and society, these women managed to solve the case while their male counterparts were unsuccessful. Feminist criticism is a literary approach that applies …show more content…
Hale and Mrs. Peters seem to stand with Mrs. Wright. Continuing from the discuss of the dirty towels, Mrs. Hale defends her neighbor from the critique of the male characters and is obviously very bothered by their comments about what kind of a women they assume Mrs. Wright to be because of them. Later in the play when our female characters discover the motive behind the murder and evidence proving it, they use their better intuition and keep it to themselves. They discovered just how badly Mrs. Wright had been oppressed by her own husband, enough to the point of her wringing his neck with a rope effectively killing him. They believed that Mrs. Wright killed her husband for the right reasons, but also knew that if they were to present the evidence they had found, Mrs. Wright would surely be convicted of the murder. So, although Mrs. Hale and Mrs. Peters are very different characters from each other, they both knew to hide the evidence without so much as speaking a word about it to each other (Glaspell 325). More so, even after this discover and knowing completely that Mrs. Wright was her husband’s murderer, Mrs. Hale gets the idea to not tell her that her fruit she had worked hard to preserve had frozen, something she know that would sadden Mrs. Wright. Instead she tells Mrs. Peters to deliver Mrs. Wright the one lone jar that hadn’t frozen as proof that her preserves made it through the winter(Glaspell 326). By standing by Mrs. …show more content…
and Mr. Wright are perhaps the most important characters of the play; the murderer and victim. Although neither character makes an appearance, one of them in jail and the other dead, much is inferred about them and their relationship through the dialogue of the characters, particularly Mrs. Hale who was their neighbor. It is a widely known fact by all the characters that Mrs. Minnie Wright was oppressed, mainly by her husband, but through Mrs. Hale’s recollection, we discover about the life of Ms. Minnie Foster. Before she was wed, Minnie Foster “used to wear pretty clothes and be lively…one of the town girls singing in the choir” (Glaspell 322). But there seemed to be a change after she married Mr. Wright; Minnie Foster seemed to die and the shell of what remained was left as Mrs. Wright. One interesting thing about this is that Mrs. Wright’s first name is finally stated, the only female name given throughout the entire play, but it was only revealed when she was talked about before she wed. In all other context she is simply referred to as Mrs. Wright. This seems to show how the other women in the play are also seemingly oppressed because of the fact that they are married and are referred to solely by their married surname. Although not typically seen as oppression today, in this era the practice of marriage in general was something not to be taken

Related Documents

Related Topics