Susan Glaspell 's A Jury Of Her Peers

1174 WordsMar 16, 20155 Pages
"A Jury of Her Peers" is a short story written by Susan Glaspell in 1917 and follows the investigation of the murder of John Wright, with his wife Minnie Wright being the alleged murderer. Martha and Lewis Hale assist Sheriff Peters and his wife, Mrs. Peters, with investigating the scene of the crime. Throughout the story, women notice significance in their findings, of which the men overlook. The men have a dismissive attitude towards the women, ignoring their contributions. When the women solve the crime in the end, they do not inform the men of the evidence found, which prevents any conviction. In her short story, "A Jury of Her Peers", Susan Glaspell conveys a feminist theme of women being oppressed under male domination and gender roles. She expresses this through the use of irony, symbolism, and characterization. First, Glaspell makes effective use of irony to display the oppression of women and gender roles. During this time period, women had little to no power and they were considered unintelligent-- only being able to cook, clean, sew, et cetera. While investigating the scene, the men belittle the women, deeming them to be too unintelligent to provide anything practical to the investigation. Mr. Hale declared, "Would the women know a clue if they did come upon it?" (Glaspell 370). This statement is ironic, because in the end of the story, the women are the ones who discover the clues that lead them to solving the crime, not the men. Not only do the women
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