Susan Glaspell : Trifles

Susan Glaspell : Trifles

Susan Glaspell : Trifles

Trifles play by Susan Glaspell is based on occasions that happened in Iowa in the late part of the century. Glaspell operated as a newspaper reporter from 1899 to 1901 where she analyzed and reported homicide trial case of Margaret Hossack, who was a wife to a farmer.  The suspect was suspect of killing her husband by attacking him using an ax on the head while sleeping.  Apparently, burglars were accused of killing the farmer, but further investigation reveal that she was unhappy and willing to continue with her marriage. Mrs. Hossack was found guilty of committing the act and punished with life imprisonment.  The incident inspired Glaspell to write the play Trifles.

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The setting of the play is untidy and bleak kitchen which is in a wild rural homestead that develop a confining disposition in the play. Kitchen room contains washed pans beneath the dish sink, dishcloth on the table, bread and other indicators of incomplete work, symbolizing the way women are badly treated and isolated after marriage. The most significant theme in the Trifles is a gender role in the society. Men and women are differentiated by their physical features, role in the society and the method of communication that is vital in the plot of the play.

Fang, Y. (2012). Analysis of Trifles From the Perspective of Deconstruction.
Gainor, J. E. (2004). Susan Glaspell in context: American theater, culture, and politics, 1915-48. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press.

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