Symbolism In “A Jury of Her Peers” Susan Glaspell’s, “A Jury of Her Peers”, took place during the early 1900s and focuses on the issues of sexism and social injustice that still exists today. In this feminist classic, Sheriff Peters and his wife, Mr. Hale and his wife, and the county attorney, Mr. Henderson go to the Wright Household to look for evidence to use against Mrs. Wright. When they arrive, the men disregard everything associated with women, whereas, the women look in debt, put themselves in Mrs. Wright's shoes, and find clues that could potentially prove that she killed her husband. While living in a male dominated society and continuously being belittled by the men, the women decide to not only break the law, but go against their husbands by hiding evidence. Throughout the story, Glaspell uses the symbols of the dead canary, the kitchen and the quilt to not only promote gender inequality roles but show what life must’ve been like for Minnie; imprisoned by her husband.
She soon realizes all of the potential freedom and the many things that she can do without her husband. Mrs. Mallard has a sense of empowerment and independence to have a new start to her life where she can live for herself. The theme of death in “Story of a Hour” presents itself with the death of Mr. Mallard. His death results in Mrs. Mallard being optimistic and looking forward to her life. This is different than what she felt the previous day when she may have thought that life was not good and she did not look forward to her future.
They are all used as symbols to create a portal into the protagonist's life. Symbolism is applied in both “The Birthmark” and “The Tell-Tale Heart” to help the reader better comprehend character aspects of selfishness and culpability portrayed in the protagonist. The symbol Edgar Allen Poe incorporated into “The Tell-Tale Heart” is the beating heart. The heart represented the guilt of the narrator’s subconscious for murdering an innocent man.
Authors, especially female authors, have long used their writing to emphasize and analyze the feminist issues that characterize society, both in the past and the present. Kate Chopin, Charlotte Perkins Gilman, and Susan Glaspell wrote narratives that best examined feminist movements through the unreliable minds of their characters. In all three stories, “The Story of an Hour”, “The Yellow Wallpaper”, and “A Jury of Her Peers”, the authors use characterization, symbolism, and foreshadowing to describe the characters’ apparent psychosis or unreasonable behavior to shed light on the social issues that characterized the late 19th century and early 20th century.
“A Jury of Her Peers” is a story that is thriving with symbolism throughout the story. Although, amongst these are a few that stand out more than the others. The most expressive symbol is the quilt that the women wish to bring to Minnie Wright while she is in jail so that she can work on it. The second symbol is the songbird who was killed by Minnie Wright’s husband, John Wright. These symbols, although small, have a meaning much larger when you stop to truly ponder them.
Throughout “Tell-Tale Heart,” Poe inserts symbolism that is meant to visually stimulate the reader and to expose the emotions of the narrator at a deeper level. By drawing comparisons to a vulture, beetle, darkness, and the heartbeat, Poe draws us into the story and demonstrates the depth of the young man’s struggle with madness. The symbolism shapes Poe’s view that human nature is fragile and can be easily swayed. Once human’s have their mind set on a particular idea, it is very hard, and nearly impossible, to get them to see things differently.
Susan Glaspell’s short story, “A Jury of Her Peers” is full of symbolism, which is portrayed through the bird in the story. The story takes place in a house that is set far back and is a lonely place. With the story being written in the 1920’s the attitude men have towards women is by far noticeable throughout the story with them being doubted or looked down upon. There is a murder scene that is being investigated with the wife of the murdered man as the number one suspect. The men in the story are looking in all the wrong places, where the women looked in the one spot to find the one clue that would close the entire case. The number one clue, the bird.
Symbolism is used to convey messages that are harder to show without saying it directly. In “The Tell Tale Heart,” The old old man’s “ eye’s is resembled of that of a vulture-a pale blue eye, with a film over it,”(74). The narrator had a fear of the eye and compared it to that of a vulture's: hideous, cold and always looking to snatch something from the ground. He is a psychopath and doesn't understand that the old man has a disease. The fear of the man's eye becomes and obsession and gets to the point til that's the only thing that he can think about.
The poet, Lascelles Abercrombie once said, “There is only one thing which can master the perplexed stuff of epic material into unity; and that is, an ability to see in particular human experience some significant symbolism of man 's general destiny.”. He talked about how powerful of a tool symbolism is and how it is the only thing that can truly define a highly complex ‘destiny’ or series of events. Symbolism is something that is found throughout Harper Lee’s book, To Kill a Mockingbird. Lee shows the reader that racism is a product of society,she portrays the matter through her symbolism of the mad dog, the birds and the bugs.
Her main character Mrs.Mallard was not very independent but not in a happily marriage. Women couldn’t do much without their husbands saying so. In the story, Mrs. Mallard's husband “dies” So she gets all happy and thinks she is finally free. The irony was when she thought she was free, her husband walks through the door.
Mrs. Mallard’s actions cause the readers to contemplate a hidden meaning woven into the story line. Mr. Mallard is assumed to die in a railroad accident, leaving Mrs. Mallard devastated. Instead of feeling sadness or grief, Mrs. Mallard actually feels free. "There would be no one to live for her during those coming years; she would live for herself. There would be no powerful will bending hers in that blind persistence with which men and women believe they have a right to impose a private will upon a fellow-creature" (Page 499).
Both of these women felt trapped within their marriage and simply wanted a way out. “Story of an Hour” begins as a tale about a woman who is struck with the devastating news that her husband has died in a train accident. However, this was not so crippling to the wife, Mrs. Mallard. Her emotions overwhelmed her. When she looked out her window while sitting in her chair,
I agree that both “The Masque of the Red Death” and “The Tell-Tale Heart” by Edgar Allen Poe can be described as short stories that value symbol over plot. Poe uses various symbols to disclose information or details to the reader, while also leaving components of the story open to interpretation. This symbolism tells its own story within the overall plot, rather than it being explained clearly by the author, cleverly adding to the interest of the read. This effective allegory allows the reader to question their literal understanding of the story, once faced with the deeper philosophical ideas. This means that in the case of these two short stories, symbols are valued over plot.
With this belief Mrs. Mallard now looks forward to a long life. Previously to her husband’s death she dreaded the years ahead spent under the thumb of her husband. Now, though, Mrs. Mallard is someone who has much to look forward to and many joys to appreciate. Soon this opportunity is taken from her, just as her chance of freedom is taken from her she learns that Brently is still alive. When Mrs. Mallard sees Brently walk through the front door, the disappointment and the devastation of loss that she suffers cause her heart