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Plays

Susan Glaspell

Book Overview: 

On the surface, a short play, Trifles, is a slice-of-life story about a murder investigation in the rural United States. However, it is also a story about the relationships between men and women, husbands and wives, and the often-overlooked "trifles" which can say so much about a person's life.

Collection of plays by Susan Glaspell

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .DICK: Claire darling, I wish you wouldn't say those startling things. You do get away with it, but I confess it gives me a shock—and really, it's unwise.

CLAIRE: Haven't you learned that the best place to hide is in the truth? (as HARRY returns) Why won't you believe me, Harry, when I tell you the truth—about doors being locked?

HARRY: Claire, it's selfish of you to keep us from eating salt just because you don't eat salt.

CLAIRE: (with one of her swift changes) Oh, Harry! Try your egg without salt. Please—please try it without salt! (an intensity which seems all out of proportion to the subject)

HARRY: An egg demands salt.

CLAIRE: 'An egg demands salt.' Do you know, Harry, why you are such an unseasoned person? 'An egg demands salt.'

HARRY: Well, it doesn't always get it.

CLAIRE: But your spirit gets no lift from the salt withheld.

HARRY: Not an inch of lift. (going back to his breakfast)

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Community Reviews

Trifles is a good short play.

Required reading for college course. Nothing to write home about.

I read this because I couldn't find the short story A Jury of Her Peers to read again, and found out it had been adapted from the play Trifles. The two are almost identical and I was really glad to find this. I also really liked Inheritors, although it took a bit for me to warm up to it.

I can't...more

An often overlooked female playwright. This collection is amazing, and is based on an actual countryside murder that was never actually solved.

I've never read anything by this author, so reading Trifles was an intrigue that kept me going. What a great perspective to show for an old-fashion crime story. The women had figured everything out, but the men only belittle and ignore them. I love that they had it all figured out because they un...more

In college, I'm pretty sure the only female playwright we studied was Lillian Hellman but I would've welcomed learning about Glaspell, too, whose four plays here show a great deal of risk, introspection, stagecraft, and complexity. I don't think I've ever fully appreciated her one-act "Trifles" u...more

Susan Glaspell is as great a playwright as Eugene O'Neill. It's a shame she's not as well known.

As many people do, I read Trifles in school. Years later, I thought I'd revisit Susan Glaspell. I do think her writing is really worthwhile, both in the prose and the ideas but the three other plays in this collection strained my patience though the scripts are not very long. If I had to rank the...more

I have no idea why Susan Glaspell isn't more famous - I don't know how well her plays would translate to the stage (and, to be honest, I can't imagine them being very successful in performance) but they read like Virginia Woolf writing drama. "The Verge" in particular was mindblowing, with a stun...more