Drama Essay "Trifles"
English 106/ Drama Essay
15 May 2006
Trifles, Susan Glaspell’s play written in 1916, reveal concerns of women living in a male dominated society. Glaspell communicates the role that women were expected to play in late 19th century society and the harm that can come of it to women, as well as men. The feminist agenda of Trifles was made obvious, in order to portray the lives of all women who live oppressed under male domination. John and Minnie Wright are two main characters who are never seen; however provide the incident for the play. In this play women are against men, Minnie against her husband, Mrs. Hale and Mrs. Peters against their husband’s, as well as men in general.
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Hale. He insinuates that even when a woman is put in a very hard situation, she only worries over little insignificant things that are of no importance. It does not occur to the sheriff that Mrs. Wright would be worrying about the outcome of her future. This demonstrates his arrogance as well as his insensitivity. The county attorney who is also investigating the murder of Mrs. Wright’s husband adds to the male’s arrogant and insensitive attitudes. Toward the end of the play the county attorney states, “For that matter a sheriff’s wife is married to the law.”(1008). This statement contributes to the arrogant, insensitive male attitudes toward women. Again the men feel that they are the only ones of importance. This demonstrates male domination in the relation between husband and wife. Women no longer have their own identity after marriage; they are identified by their husband’s. Glaspell also uses the titles of the characters to portray this. All of the male characters in the play are identified by first and last name or career title, (John Wright or Sheriff etc.) which stresses importance. The women are identified by their husband’s last name only, except for Minnie (Minnie Foster) when Mrs. Hale is remembering her before marriage. Mrs. Peters, the sheriff’s wife has accepted her identity loss and taken on her husband’s as her own. Throughout the play she only identifies with her husband, which