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.
Women Domestic Lives in early 20th Century In Virginia Woolf’s essays, entitled “The Professions for Women” and “Virginia Woolf”, she describes women’s domestic lives in the early 20th century. Woolf’s writing also sets the scene for a period when women’s place existed in the private sphere, while men’s place was the public. The aim of this paper is to explore the domestic lives of women through the lens of marriage, social class and domesticity by reviewing the writings of Virginia Woolf, Alice Wood’s essay, “Made for Measure”, Susan Glaspell’s play, “Trifles”, and Alice Dunbar-Nelson’s poem, “I Sit and Sew”.
From Martin Luther’s 95 Thesis to the American Declaration of Independence, literature has been used all throughout history as a means to question perceived wrongdoing. This is exactly what Sarah Orne Jewett and Susan Glaspell intended to do when they wrote about the roles of women in a patriarchal society. Literature is an effective method of questioning the status quo because it allows writers to use tools like symbolism and characterization to emphasize their point. In “Trifles”, Glaspell uses symbolism to show the constraints placed on women.
The Women Can women who lead very different lives be similar? Susan Glaspell explores the differences and similarities of two characters in her story “Trifles.” Written in 1916, Glaspell’s fictional story uses an unforeseen event to bring Mrs. Hale, a farmer’s wife, and Mrs. Peters, a sheriff’s wife, together. Although Mrs. Hale and Mrs. Peters have their differences such as Mrs. Hale being outspoken, observant, and a leader, while Mrs. Peters is nervous and does not want to challenge authority, the women share some similarities such as being aware of male condescension and willing to keep information from male authorities if it means helping another woman.
Mrs. Hale also states later that there is a great deal of work to be done on a farm (971). This is speaking of how hard her life is. Mrs. Hale also later implies that making preserves is hard work and this is why she cares about them so much (972). When it comes to the Wrights bad marriage the women imply that John was to blame. Mrs. Hale implies that Mrs. Wright hardly had visitors, although she was nice, but John wasn’t very cheery, but rather depressing and that’s why people avoided the Wrights place because it wasn’t cheerful (971).
Through the act of Mrs. Wright murdering her husband, Glaspell conveys that a women’s insanity to kill is due to the actions of men. Before Mrs. Wright was maltreated, her reputation was symbolized as a woman of color. As stated by the ladies, Mrs. Hales and Mrs. Peters, Mrs. Wright was seen in elegant clothing and lived “lively” as she used to be in the town’s girl choir. This description displays the “Before” of Mrs. Wright reputation and symbolizes her roaming free and living life fully like the bird.
Wright it is easy to tell that she is not at all upset about her husband’s death. When being asked about the situation she “laughed and pleated her skirt” (4). Mrs. Wright is compared to a bird that is found later in the story. The bird was found in a pretty box with marks around its neck. Hale and Peters say that the death of her bird would have been her motive if she actually was her husband’s murderer, but the author utilizes the bird and its broken cage to be a comparison to Mrs. Wright’s life.
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.
They both conclude that someone was rough with the empty birdcage. Immediately afterward, Mrs. Hale comments on the men’s progress to find evidence, saying, “’I wish if they’re going to find any evidence they’d be about it’” (Glaspell 1416). Mrs. Hale’s remark is ironic because her current conversation about the birdcage’s door hinge is indirect evidence, yet she is growing impatient with the men’s attempts to discover any solid evidence. A little later on, Mrs. Hale relates the idea of a bird to Mrs. Wright by saying, “’she was kind of like a bird herself.’”
Quen Head Comp 2 11:30 Literary Analysis “Trifles” Gender Roles Everyone around the world has a mindset that certain genders have certain rules in relationships and everyday life. The author, Susan Glaspell, showed many ways in the story “Trifles” how males can look at things in a different perspective than women sometimes do. For generations, women have fought for power and rights, one of the biggest events in history is The Women’s Rights’ Movement starting in 1848 and going on for years until 1920 when the 19th amendment that granted American women the right to vote. Throughout history the fight between women and men has been a long process from rights, to gender specific roles in career, pay, and equality.
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.
Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s short story, “The Yellow wallpaper” and Susan Glaspell ’s play “Trifles” are alike in some respect; they both assess the situation of marriage and the divided genders with society’s criticism and impartiality toward women. For Gilman, the nineteenth-century story reveals the fact that this gender
Another example is the Gilchrist sisters, as they are forced into selling their bodies for money and put on the streets by their abusive, drunken father. The relentless abuse and oppression of women within Butler’s work can be seen as well-imagined, as women within our own society are deemed weaker and less valued in society, even as they become more vocal and apparent within society
Mary Wollstonecraft’s, Maria or The Wrongs of Woman, is an analyzation and critique about a woman’s place in society. Specifically, that socially, politically, and economically woman are at a disadvantage. Furthermore, society perpetuates this imbalance through certain expectations about motherhood, marriage, and double standards. This power imbalance has always been present in society and through the analyzation of Maria and themes such as: motherhood, domination, and traditionalist thought it is possible to contextualize the era that Mary Wollstonecraft lived in to gain a better understanding of what women went through in her time so that we have a reference to compare to how women are treated today.