Irony of Small Trifles

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Irony of Small Trifles

In the drama Trifles, Glaspell shows two main view points. That is how the men have the role of being the head of everything and how the women do not get as fairly treated and are only house maids to the men. She characterizes the men as not giving the women the credit they deserve for their hard labors each and everyday. The sheriff, attorney, and neighboring farmer help prove how in the past men were completely superior to women. By showing these two points it makes us feel more sympathetic for the women because of how they are treated. The women always have to go along with what the men tell them, even if they disagree. Since the men are distinguished from the women, the women form their own alliance because they feel empathy for each other. The men and women have seemed to of taken sides against each other. And by the men always hassling the women about their trifles, they are actually working against themselves because the women decide not to give them the information needed to solve the case.

The first view that Glaspell gives in Trifles is that the men are far superior or higher than the women. The men in Trifles show the expected character as we would hear about in the past before women had the rights they do now. The attorney displays this past male figure the best. He is always looking down on the women. For example, in the start he says “This feels good. Come up to the fire, ladies.” (1249) This shows how he feels the need to tell or allow the women to come to the fire as if they were not able to do it on their own. He also shows this when he says, “Here’s a nice mess.” (1250) commenting about the house and then says “Dirty towels! Not much of a housekeeper, would you say, ladies?” (1251) This exemplifies how he expects the women to take care of the house and that it should always be spotless. At this point in the story the attorney gets into an argument with the ladies who try to defend Mrs. Wright. They prove their point in that it is not right for a man to come into a house and complain about the mess when Mrs. Wright did not have time to clean it. The sheriff also displays this hierarchy of men over women. He follows what the attorney says “I suppose anything Mrs. Peters does’ll be all right.” (1251) Showing that there is not much as harm she could do with that area of the house as if she is ...

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...d. So this guilt proves how the women are going to stick together, even more since the murder, and never tell the truth of the matters.

At the end of Trifles we do not really know what happens. I do not think the women will tell on each other because they are sharing the same feelings. The women are loyal to each other and more so to women than mankind. The men in this story show a great deal of non-feminism and have a huge sense of superiority over the women. The women are the victims of this play not the man who is murdered. I think that Glaspell has proved this irony in this story. The women do not even have first names in the story so how could they be at the same standards as the men. In the men’s eyes the women are inferior to them. So they are to ignorant to realize that the case is solved by the women who notice the small trifles. For the men’s actions the women decide not to share their information to protect a friend, with this irony the men will never solve this insignificant murder case in the story.

Works Cited

----Glaspell, Susan. Trifles. The Bedford Introduction to Literature. Ed. Michael Meyer. 7th ed. Boston: Bedford/St. Martin’s, 2005. 1044.
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