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Comparing the Use of Symbols in Steinbeck's The Chrysanthemums and Glaspell's Trifles

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John Steinbeck wrote “The Chrysanthemums” where the protagonist, Elisa maintains her flower garden with a flower called Chrysanthemums. In a daily routine, Elisa’s husband Henry is a typical farmer who was busy with his orchard and steers, while Elisa, a housewife tends to her garden as the chrysanthemums were shown as Elisa’s children. Written by Susan Glaspell, “Trifle” was a play about Mrs. Wright who was put through an investigation where she was the main suspect in the case of her husband‘s death. In the play “Trifles”, the canary symbolizes a child for Mrs. Wright who’s also a house wife and she took care of that bird like it was her child. The bird (canary) in “Trifles” is symbolically similar to the flowers in the Steinbeck story “The Chrysanthemums”.
Mrs. Wright, however, justified killing her husband due to Mr. Wright trapping her inside the house and how Mrs. Wright job is only to be domestic wife. When Mrs. Hale (farmer’s wife) and Mrs. Peters (sheriff’s wife) discovered a dead bird with her neck bruised all over, they start to put the pieces to the puzzle together and ...


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