Conflicts Between Authorities
Antigone, the main character of Antigone, protects her dead brother, Polyneices’ honor as she disobeys the laws of King Creon. Antigone shamelessly and proudly breaks the law, does not care if she is caught, and loudly admits to the crime in front of her fellow citizens. Mrs. Hale, the main character of Trifles prevents a neighbor from being charged with her husband’s murder as she breaks the law in front of two legal authorities, the sheriff and the county attorney. Both characters' crimes are similar; however, their differences lie in how they handle their illegalities. Ms. Hale performs her crime deviously and quietly, does not want to be caught, and has no intention to. In the play Trifles, the legal authority is the county attorney and the sheriff, and the moral law would be the women, Mrs. Hale and Mrs. Peters. In Antigone the moral entity would be the divine law, such as the gods, and the legal authority would be Creon being the enforcer of the civil laws. The conflict between the women, county attorney, and the sheriff all arose from the murder of Mr. Wright. In Antigone the conflict between moral and legal entity arose from the burial of Polyneices. Antigone felt that she had to bury Polyneices because if she had not she would get the wrath of the gods, or the moral entity.
In Trifles the legal authority expressed a male superior attitude toward Mrs. Hale and Mrs. Peters which caused them to feel threatened and rebel against the legal authority during the case of the murder. The county attorney says to Mrs. Hale “Ah, loyal to your sex, I see. But you and Mrs. Wright were neighbors. I suppose you were friends, too” (Trifles 1114). The county attorney replies with this when Mrs. Hale sticks up for Mrs. Wright’s house. Just because a few items are out of their place does not mean she is the slob it could be her husband. Once the women found the clues the Mrs. Wright had left behind to show why she had killed her...
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