A Jury of Her Peers

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Themes and Colors
The Subjugation of Women Theme Icon
Male Obliviousness to Women’s Importance Theme Icon
Legal Obligations vs. Gender Loyalty Theme Icon
Crime and Punishment Theme Icon
LitCharts assigns a color and icon to each theme in A Jury of Her Peers, which you can use to track the themes throughout the work.

In “A Jury of Her Peers,” men and women have distinctly different gender roles and the story portrays the different opportunities available to men and women both in terms of the division of labor and in society as a whole. This world is controlled by men because social rules restrict women’s ability to move about, to choose their own interests, or to exist as separate beings from their husbands. Minnie Wright and Martha Hale are…

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While society and individual men oppress women throughout this short story, another theme in the text is the unexpected power the women have within the domestic sphere. This power is unexpected because the male characters repeatedly overlook the potential of the “trifles” that concern women. Ironically, the two women discover the evidence the men seek among the domestic items that the men dismiss. The men are unable to see the importance of the…

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The story begins like a murder mystery, in which evidence is sought to convict a culprit. A murder mystery examines a crime, which, when the criminal is caught, is appropriately answered with a punishment. However, in this story, the ideas about what constitutes a crime and how a punishment can or cannot account for a crime are made more complicated. The jury of Minnie Wright’s peers—Mrs. Peters and Martha Hale—judges her to…

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