Trifles By Susan Glaspell Literary Devices

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“Fiction is fact distorted into the truth,” (qtd. in Disher, 22). Fictions are constructed with literary devices such as character, settings, conflicts, symbolism, theme, and so on, which works together to create a harmony. However, some of these devices stand out from the others in writing. “Trifles,” authored by Susan Glaspell dealt with an important issue – feminism – that affected women in the early 1900s. The idea that women’s contributions are as relevant in the society to men’s contributions was intricately embedded in the one-act play to reveal the theme – feminism. Glaspell used different literary devices to convey her feminist message through the theme, characters, settings, and symbolism in Trifles. The main roles of women in the…show more content…
A story has a main character, which can be more than one; those who help the main character; those who hinder the main character; and those who influence the main character. The play started with five characters enters the scene of the play, the messy kitchen in the abandoned farmhouse of John Wright. These five characters were Mr. Henderson – the county attorney, Mr. and Mrs. Peter – the sheriff and his wife, and Mr. and Mrs. Hale – the neighbors. Minnie Wright and John Wright were not featured in the play scene, although the play was centered on them. The main characters in Trifles are Mrs. Peters and Mrs. Hale. They both referred to Mr. and Mrs. Wright in their dialogue and the three male characters also played different roles to help the main characters. Mr. Hale told the sheriff and the county attorney of his visit to the Wright residence the previous day. He found Mrs. Wright sitting on a rocking chair looking “queer,” who told him that her husband was lying dead in their bedroom. The male characters proceed to the scene of the murder, which they considered very relevant to the case leaving Mrs. Peter and Mrs. Hale in the kitchen to gather necessary items for Mrs. Wright. While gathering these items and through their conversation, they wondered if Mrs. Wright was indeed guilty of murdering her husband. They discovered a wrecked birdcage and a dead bird whose neck…show more content…
The details of the setting in Glaspell’s Trifles provided clues for solving the murder of John Wright. The setting was described as messy and unkempt, “left without having been put in order--unwashed pans under the sink, a loaf of bread outside the bread-box, a dish-towel on the table--other signs of incompleted work” (Glaspell 1). The messy state of the kitchen suggested the state of mind of Mrs. Wright. The men disregarded the scene of the play as irrelevant to the case, “nothing important but kitchen things” (Glaspell 3), so they moved to the scene of the murder instead. Meanwhile the two women uncover so much about the case while they worry over their trifles. The women formed a bond while sharing experiences with each other and became rebellious against the men by hiding relevant evidence they had uncover. The dialogue is another relevant to understanding the play. The men’s dialogue was sarcastic towards the women and the women’s feelings were not taking seriously. For instance the sheriff pointed out that, “Well, can you beat the women! Held for murder and worryin' about her preserves”

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