Susan Glaspell's Trifles and Feminism. Free Essay

Published: 2023-01-03
Susan Glaspell's Trifles and Feminism. Free Essay
Type of paper:  Research paper
Categories:  Women Discrimination Feminism Writers
Pages: 3
Wordcount: 726 words
7 min read

People understand that the only person who knows the truth in a murder case is the victim. This play is based on the murder of John Wright, the husband to Minnie Foster who is the prime suspect. Minnie claims that her husband was strangled while she was sleeping when the county attorney was questioning her. This play thus illustrates the use of feminism as the main theme as Mrs. Hale and Mrs. Peters aim toward helping Minnie in her situation as she was being abused in her marriage. This paper seeks to expound on the theme of feminism in the play Trifles through how the women sympathize with Minnie's situation; they depict her as a woman who is consciously disturbed, as well as finding evidence that solved the murder. The paper also seeks to show how women are discriminated and to explain that women are stronger when they are together as they defend each other.

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Feminism is seen through Mrs. Hale and Mrs. Peters because they sympathize with Minnie and try to understand her motives for killing her husband. John Wright emotionally abused his wife while preventing her from engaging in activities that brought happiness. The women noted that she enjoyed singing before getting married. Before they used to refer to her as Minnie as her name means happiness, but this changed after she got married and they started referring to her as Mrs. Wright. Traditionally, the kitchen is the place for women, but men find them inept even in their place of specialty. The investigators, however, did not see anything of importance when they were in the kitchen. The Sherriff even comments that there were nothing their only kitchen things (Leon n.p). He talks of Minnie being a lousy housekeeper and kicks pans under the sink. On the contrary, women have mastered the kitchen, and this is seen in how they are looking for things and find them with ease. The women depict her as a lousy housekeeper but as a woman who has a disturbed consciousness.

The women express their feminism when they go to Minnie's house to carry out their investigation on her husband's death. Men and women anchored varying opinions of the murder case. The men's investigation was methodological as per the books. They find nothing against Minnie (Leon n.p). The women, on the other hand, approach the setting as if it was their home as they try to be empathetic toward Minnie. The women are not in search of any evidence because they were only trying to get some supplies to Minnie and they encounter the evidence in the process. They solve the case that the men are unable to solve.

The evidence of the dead bird is found in Minnie's sewing box by the two women. They examine the dead bird and discover that it was strangled to death violently. This depicts women to be more thorough as compared to men. They were not trained yet they solved the case while the men who are trained proved to be incompetent since they shrugged the evidence in the kitchen as it was not their place to be in society. This challenged the gender role of prejudice that is fond of discriminating the female gender (Wang n.p). Though this feminism is seen in the play, they then hide the evidence to prevent Minnie from being prosecuted for murder. The women go to her defense and point out that the murder was out of self-defense from the assault and emotional abuse inflicted by her husband; this thus brought the unfortunate culminating death of her husband. The play shows a twist as the murderer is perceived as violent and the victim to be innocent. However, for this play the vice versa was true.

In conclusion, it is clear that feminism is a strong theme in the play since it is seen on how the women sympathize with Minnie's situation, they find the evidence that would pin her to her husband's murder thus solving it. They also hide this evidence and come to her defense of the murder case.

Works Cited

Leon, Hilton. Women & performance; A Journal of Feminist theory. Trifles by Susan Glaspell. Taylor and Francis. 2011.

Wang, Ruo-Ian. Journal of Gansu Lianhe University; Mal authority subverted by trifles on the feminist consciousness in Susan Glaspell's Trifles. Gansu Lianhe University. China. 2010.

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