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The symbols in Susan Glaspell's Trifles

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  1. Birdcage represents Minnie and her life
  2. Bird singing was symbolic
  3. Once her husband killed the bird, Minnie was driven over the edge

Authors use an array of literary elements to convey messages. One tool alone can bear numerous meanings. Susan Glaspell's Trifles provides an exemplary example of the use of multiple literary elements to convey various messages. The story's plot progresses seamlessly through the use of such tools. Widely acknowledged, the symbols of Susan Glaspell's Trifles serve as the principal literary elements within the work. Susan utilizes the bird and birdcage to portray multiple representations within the story. The birdcage is symbolic of Minnie's life while the bird symbolizes multiple characteristics of Minnie such as her voice and sanity.

[...] Ultimately, Minnie's life is damaged, but she is free from oppression. The bird represents Minnie's voice through its song. The bird is preserved in the same manner that Minnie's voice is preserved. Finally, once the bird is killed Minnie loses her rationality and kills her husband. The bird and cage are huge symbols that allow the audience to piece together the conclusion. Works Cited Reference: Glaspell, Susan. ?Trifles.? The Norton Anthology of American Literature. Ed. Nina Baym. New York: W.W. Norton 1893-1903. [...]


[...] The fact was revealed when Mrs. Hale made the statement, was Minnie Foster, one of the town girls singing in the choir.? (Glaspell, 1900) Mrs. Hale went on to state ?There was a man around last year selling canaries cheap, but I don't know as she took one; maybe she did. She used to sing real pretty herself.? (Glaspell, 1900) Furthermore, Minnie longed for a voice. Her voice was crushed by her husband just as the bird's song was eradicated by Mr. [...]

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