Susan Glaspell Writing Styles in Trifles

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The structure of a play affects all of its most important elements the plot, characters, and themes. An episodic play, such as William Shakespeare's Hamlet, requires many twists and turns of plot, numerous characters and locations, and great stretches of time in order for the story to unfold. A climactic play, such as Sophocles's famous tragedy Oedipus Rex, typically presents only a handful of characters involved in a single plot, which builds toward a climax the most important moment in the play.

One of the most restrictive forms is the one-act play, a style favored by Trifles author Susan Glaspell. In every respect the one-act play is more tightly compressed than a full-length climactic Greek tragedy. Because one-acts are typically short, with playing times of fifteen to forty-five minutes, the number of characters introduced must be limited, and their personalities must be developed quickly.

Glaspell takes full...

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This section contains 658 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Trifles Study Guide
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Trifles from Drama for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.