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How Things Can BeFor Women: Gender Issues in Trifles - Essay Example

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How Things Can BeFor Women: Gender Issues in Trifles

The Sheriff mocks Mrs. Wright's concern for the familiar, saying, "Well, can you beat the women! Held for murder and worryin' about her preserves," not understanding that Mrs. Wright has nothing else to worry about. Her life ended when she killed her husband; only the trappings of normal domesticity, like her fruit, can bring her comfort.
As the play progresses, the gender gap widens with the Attorney's ridicule of Mrs. Wright's housekeeping. Mrs. Hale's asserts, "Men's hands aren't always as clean as they might be," suggesting that the mess is not entirely Mrs. Wright's fault. Mrs. Hale is a strong woman who sticks up for other women. She shows her loyalty, saying, "I'd hate to have men coming into my kitchen, snooping around and criticising." It chafes her that men should register an opinion on a kitchen's cleanliness: they do not want her opinion on the murder.
The men's dismissal of the women is expressed in the Sheriff's casual, "I suppose anything Mrs. Peters does'll be all right," as if a woman couldn't affect the environment. Later, the Attorney says, "Mrs. Peters doesn't need supervising. a sheriff's wife is married to the law," suggesting that a woman's thoughts, motivation, and identity are defined her husband. ...Show more

Summary

In Susan Glaspell's Trifles, men and women inhabit different spheres. Convinced that only they have the capacity to understand the crime, the men see women "used to worrying over trifles." The women remain in their expected roles as domestic experts, but have an understanding of human behavior that allows them to solve the crime…
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How Things Can BeFor Women: Gender Issues in Trifles essay example
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