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Gender Roles In Susan Glaspell's A Jury Of Her Peers

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The short story “A Jury of Her Peers” revolves around Minnie wright, she is the main focus of a murder investigation. The story shifts views to two women, Mrs. Peter and Mrs. Hale who are internally struggling to decide their verdict on Minnie as well as deciding her faith. Throughout the story, the reader gets a glimpse of the struggle women face living in a world controlled by men. Susan Glaspell uses the symbolism of the trifles, dead bird, and the quilt to develop the theme of gender role throughout the Short story.
Before the twentieth century, there were many stereotypical roles assigned to men and women. The men were seen as the head of the household so they would go out into the world and work in order to support their family. On the other hand, women would stay at home cooking, cleaning, and taking care of the children. In the short story “A Jury of Her Peers” the men viewed the women as facetious and incompetent from beginning to end. They would patronize the women by stating remarks like “women are used to worrying over trifles” (Glaspell
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Throughout the story, the audience can see that while the men are supposedly looking for “real” evidence upstairs, the women keep finding “trifles” downstairs. Among the first findings was a birdcage which when the men saw they just shrugged it off and completely ignored it. On the other hand, the women were concerned about the presence of the broken birdcage and where the bird might be. While discussing about the birdcage, Mrs. Hale states “She––come to think of it, she was kind of like a bird herself. Real sweet and pretty, but kind of timid and¬¬¬––fluttery. How––she––did––change.” (Glaspell 249) illustrating that Mrs. Hale was comparing her to the bird (trapped in a cage and all alone). After talking about the birdcage the two women moved on from the subject only to come across an old box at the bottom of a sewing

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