Trifles is a play by Susan Glaspell. It was put on stage for the first time in 1916. The play deals with the death of Mr. Wright—the characters in the play are trying to figure out who killed him.
A good thesis for this play would be to state that the play can be seen as an example of how gender roles have changed in today’s society compared to the time that Trifles is set in. Women in modern society have a lot more rights than women did in the early 20th century. Today, women are no longer expected to merely be good wives and housewives, which is what women in Trifles are expected to be. Instead, women today are able to have their own careers, earn money, and be independent from their husbands. At the same time, men nowadays are not seen as the head of the house anymore. In the past, a man was often regarded as the person in charge, the owner of the house, and often even the owner of his wife. This is not the case anymore in today’s society at all.
In the play, we find out that Mr. Wright was abusive towards his wife. Nowadays, a woman in the same situation would not be expected to put up with this. There are plenty of options for victims of domestic abuse to seek help and support in order to escape their ordeal. Divorcing an abusive husband is much easier nowadays, as divorce is not as frowned upon as it used to be in the early 20th century. In addition to that, depending on the kind of abuse, domestic abuse often is treated as a criminal offense, whereas back in the days of Trifles, men were not punished if they mistreated their wives. These contrasts between gender roles in the early 20th century and gender roles today can most definitely be evidenced by analyzing Trifles portrayal of gender roles.