Trifles Essay, Research Paper
Trifles was a play based on a real life tragedy. A tragedy in which a man was found strangled in his bed while the wife unknowingly sleeps. The author, Susan Glaspell, was on staff at the Des Moines Daily News when the murdered occurred. The play is said to draw upon a detective s story. However, the drama was not only written for mystery but was also written to show how women were treated around her time.
The story begins when the sheriff, his wife Mrs. Peters, the County Attorney Mr. Henderson, Mr. and Mrs. Hale returns to the Wrights farmhouse looking for evidence. Mr. Hale was asked by the County Attorney to walk through, what had happen yesterday morning when he had arrived at the house. Mr. Hale stated that he came to the house and Mrs. Wright was sitting in her rocker, looking strange rocking back and forth. When Mr. Hale asked if he could see her husband ( Mr. Wright ) she said no but when asked if he was home. She had said yes but that he was dead up stairs with a rope around his neck.
The next few minutes of conversation was between Mr. Henderson and Mrs. Hale. Mr. Henderson was making side remarks about Mrs. Wright s housekeeping, while Mrs. Hale tried to defend not only he but also farm wives in general. The men had gone up stairs in attempt to gather more evidence. The women were down stairs collecting some of Mrs. Wright s personal belongings to take to her in jail. While searching for these items they find a dead bird with a broken neck wrapped in silk in her sewing box but the women decided not to show this new evidence to the men.
By writing this play Susan Glaspell was not only trying to show the world a murder but was trying to show how women in general were treated during her time. Trifles was a way to express her-self. So the world could see how women were being treated as a whole. If you read the play there are hints with-in it, which shows the woman s place in society.
One example of this is when Mr. Henderson was making snide remarks about the cleanliness of the house. It s not always the woman s place to clean the house and that was one of the finer points Glaspell was trying to make.
Another example of this is when the women were talking downstairs while the men were upstairs gathering evidence. Mr. Hale had made the comment; how Mrs. Wright use to were pretty clothes and sing in the church but no longer did these things after marriage. I believe that her husband made her stop doing these things that she had loved to do before marriage. The killing of the bird was just the snapping point for Mrs. Wright. I believed that she did kill her husband in a way to escape his abuse mentally. In Mrs. Wright s time it wasn t a women s place to speak up or even against her husband. The wife was basically a puppet at her husband s disposal.
Glaspell is a very emotional and movating writer, which made good points around her time. She was one of the few people who have tried to pave the way for women, as well as open up the eyes of not just her community but the eyes of the world as a whole.