Machinal Essay

Sophie Treadwell
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Martinelli is a Seattle-based freelance writer and editor. In this essay, Martinelli examines how the patriarchal machine of the 1920s stifled Helen Jones, and the women's movement writ large, by forcing Helen into roles created by a male-dominated, oppressive social structure.

The Women's Suffrage movement finally delivered to women the right to vote on August 26, 1920, when Henry Burns cast the deciding vote that made Tennessee the thirty-sixth, and final, state to ratify the Nineteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution. Although this was a landmark movement in the Women's Movement, the struggle for equality certainly did not end then. Women continued to be subjected to sexual discrimination, both professionally and personally. Sophie Treadwell wrote Machinal in the wake of the ratification of the Nineteenth Amendment, understanding and foreshadowing the uphill struggle women still faced in the United States.

Machinal in particular spoke to the countless women forced to...

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This section contains 1,756 words
(approx. 5 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Machinal Study Guide
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Drama for Students
Machinal from Drama for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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