In: English and Literature

Submitted By ms1819
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April 7th 2009
Lit & Comp
Marriage and beliefs can cause tension when it comes to law and justice. This is demonstrated in the one act play “Trifles” by Susan Glaspell. “Trifles” is a play that takes place in the early 20th century. This play is set at the scene of a murder, where a house wife is suspected of killing her husband. The story comes down to two women deciding what to do with newly found evidence. This causes tension between law and justice. The treatments these women receive during this story portray a larger statement about the role of gender and justice in society. For example, the Sheriff, Mr. Peters and his wife represent the conflict between law and justice because Mrs. Peters has to choose between her marriage to the “law” and her beliefs of justice.
One important role in this story is sexism. “Trifles” involves drama within the male dominated society of the time period. The men in this play such as the Sheriff, the County Attorney, and Mr. Hale all represent the law. These men are in the play to try to enforce the law and find evidence against the suspected murderer Mrs. Wright. Justice is demonstrated in the characters Mrs. Peters, Mrs. Hale, and Mrs. Wright. Mrs. Peters and Mrs. Hale are at the crime scene supporting their husbands to find evidence. After being mocked by their husbands, Mrs. Peters and Mrs. Hale conceal the evidence they find to bring Mrs. Wright closer to justice. Mrs. Peters keeps her mouth shut and goes along with Mrs. Hale’s last minute decision to hide the dead canary they have found. The men in this story overlook the women in the kitchen because they don’t believe women can have any important input. The input the men overlooked was the hard evidence they wanted to find. This all comes down to the question; is it right for Mrs. Hale and Mrs. Peters to conceal evidence from the county attorney?
In my…...

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Information Trifles

...who intends to prosecute Minnie * In his arrogance and haste, he misses vital details * Is "young and arrogant" Sheriff Peters * Sheriff of the rural community * Married to Mrs. Peters * Arrested Minnie, but leaves George Henderson to head the investigation * Mrs. Peters, though she didn’t know the younger Minnie, can relate to Minnie’s loneliness and isolation as she recalls her own losses; she helps Mrs. Hale hide the evidence Mrs. Peters * Married to the Sheriff John Wright * The murdered man and owner of the house Mrs. Minnie Wright (f/k/a Minnie Foster) * John Wright's wife and his suspected murderer ************************************ Summary Feminist Drama Trifles is an example of early feminist drama. Though its plot focuses on a single moral choice, that of Mrs. Hale and Mrs. Peters deciding whether or not to expose why Mrs. Wright killed her husband. It addresses the principal issue of justice and contemporary issues of gender and identity politics. Susan Glaspell’s power comes from the way she interweaves these issues until they are impossible to separate....

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...“Trifles” There were a lot of things in “Trifles” that the women “get” that the men don’t. The women notice a lot more about the house than the men do. Such as, one half of the table being cleaned, a loaf of bread out of the bread box, the stitching in her quilt was in odd places. A thing they noticed was the hinge of the birdcage was pulled apart. After this discovery, the women make another important discovery in the sewing basket. There was a bird wrapped in silk with its neck wrung. The women are the only ones who understand the loneliness of Mrs. Wright. They understand her anger, grief, and highly charged reaction at losing the songbird, the single thing that brings her any joy, a "trifle" that men would miss. The men lack concern for the lives of the women and the difficult task it is for them keep a house running smoothly and cleanly. They very much take for granted what they consider to be "trifles”. Mr. Hale refers to preserving jelly, a very difficult job, as a trifle. He is unaware of the work Mrs. Wright, or any woman, does to be able to put fruit up as preserves that will last through the colder months. When the men heard Mrs. Peters and Mrs. Hale talking about the quilt Mrs. Wright was making, the Sheriff made a joke and the other men laughed. This once again demonstrated the lack of interest in, and appreciation for, the work that the women do. Overall, the men imagine that the women who take care of their homes and children lead lives filled with......

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