Justice In Susan Glaspell's Trifles

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A Definition of Justice Equality is the well-known problem faced by women. It is the issue of how women have been treated differently from men who act as if they have a higher social position. Besides the equality issue, there is another problem faced by many women: mental abuse at home. The husbands are not literally abuse their wife, but how they act have made their wives live in agony. Subsequently, when the women as the oppressed party who have been treated unequally cannot demand such abuse to be punished since it is not written in man’s law, they will seek their own justice. These ideas of equality and justice are depicted well through Susan Glaspell’s Trifles that was made in 1916. Through the murder case of Mr. Wright, the play reveals how oppression can trigger women’s struggle. This paper then, tries to explain how women as the dominated group resist inequality and finally seek their own definition of justice. From the beginning of the play, Glaspell has emphasized inequality issue between men and women. When the party enters the house, Mr. Henderson asks the women to come to the fire but in a commanding voice. He exercises his power by only saying “come up to the fire, women” (1) without using a polite word like ‘please’ or saying it with a questioning tone. It indicates that he thinks that he is above the women;…show more content…
However, this condition starts to change the moment the women challenge the power. They, as the dominated group, resist the inequality by doing something that brings justice. For Mrs. Wright, her definition of justice is when she kills her husband the way he kills her bird. For Mrs. Hale and Mrs. Peters, justice has been prevailed when they lie about the evidence for the case that becomes the symbols of their equality and the mockery of the men’s initial
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