Susan Glaspell 's ' Trifles '

1220 WordsApr 20, 20175 Pages
Trifles Symbolism Essay Symbols are important, especially in literature. They have been known to inspire hope and life, in turn inspiring some of the most profound actions in the history of the world. Yet, humanity’s statement to symbols goes beyond us finding meaning in innominate or non-human objects. People assign humanity into objects, almost a part of themselves. This concept is clearly demonstrated in Susan Glaspell’s play, Trifles. The work contains many element of symbolism that make important and relieving comments on the characters of the play and the themes of the story. One of the first symbols introduced in the work, Mrs. Wright’s apron is deeply symbolic of her personal struggle in her home and marriage. Physically, the apron…show more content…
While the apron symbolizes, the domestic restrictions placed upon women, the canary represents the societal limitations that women were also held to during the twentieth century. Throughout the drama, Mrs. Wright and the canary share many similarities. For example, Mrs. Hale, the wife of Mr. Hale, describes that Mrs. Wright “was kind of like a bird herself—sweet and pretty, but kind of timid and—fluttery” (185). Overall, the quotation describes Mrs. Wright as a gentle and submissive woman, the type of woman society expected her to be. In addition, although Mrs. Hale compares her to a bird in a favorable manner, she also defines Mrs. Wright as a woman that is fragile and uncappable of providing for herself, another social stereotype that women were subject to. Ultimately, however, the rigid social expectations for women served to reiterate their role in the home and to further confine them to the homestead itself, especially as society typically objectified and trivialized women, celebrating the conforming wife while condemning women to have their wings clipped by society’s standards. In this way, beyond her personality, Mrs. Wright becomes even more synonymous with the canary, an estranged creature confined behind bars as an aesthetic spectacle that is unable to sing an independent song. Lastly, Mrs., Wright’s quilt is directly symbolic of the empathetic relationship representative of the daily experiences of the woman, her namesake trifles, and serves to

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