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Analysis of Susan Glaspell’s “Trifles” Essay

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The single act play “Trifles” is loosely based on the murder of a farmer in the state of Iowa in the early nineteenth century, which Glaspell reported on while working as a journalist. The farmer’s wife was accused of the murder, and was initially convicted, but later acquitted. Literary analysts note that Glaspell “approached the case like a detective” (Bryan and Wolf). More than a decade after that incident, when she was a career writer, analysts describe, “in a span of ten days, Glaspell composed a one-act play” being inspired from that real life murder event (Bryan and Wolf). In “Trifles,” while the county attorney and sheriff, along with Mr. Hale are investigating the murder of Mr. Wright, the female companions Mrs. Hale and Mrs.…show more content…
In her marriage, Mrs. Wright did not have children and that made the place “a quite house” (1391). This, along with her isolated surrounding atmosphere, made her feel lonelier. The place where Mrs. Wright lives is not so pleasant, and as Mrs. Hale ponders, “may be because it’s down in a hollow”, and no visibility of the people around (1391). Also, because of her marriage conditions, Minnie was forced to alienate herself from meeting with other ladies. Because of her loneliness and her inherent vivacious personality, she attached herself to the singing canary. Minnie suffocated in her marriage with the imposing John Wright. The town knows John as a good man because “he didn’t drink, and kept his word,” and also “paid his debts” (1391). However, he is not a very friendly person, nor easy to get along with, and he is “like a raw wind that gets to the bone” because of his uncompassionate relationships with people (1391). Mrs. Hale “doesn’t think a place’d be any cheerfuller for John Wright being in it” (1388). John was a very greedy and stringent person, as Mrs. Hale recalls, “Wright was close,” and that made Minnie to “kept so much to herself” (1389). Even the neighbor Mr. Hale knows about John, as he tells the attorney, “what his wife wanted made (not) much difference to John” (1386). It doesn’t surprise Mrs. Hale why Minnie had the bird, because John is “no
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