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Visiting professor talks about Susan Glaspell’s ‘Trifles’

In the second humanities lecture of the summer series at Mulberry Center Church Saturday, Rachel Anderson answers questions following her presentation on “Trifles,” a one-act play written by Susan Glaspell, a Pulitzer-prize-winning author born in Davenport.

Anderson told her audience: “Glaspell was instrumental in giving a voice to women in the period 1915-1930.”

Perhaps best-known for her plays — she wrote a total of 15 — Glaspell went on to write novels NS and short stories, including the acclaimed “A Jury of Her Peers.” She founded the Provincetown Players in Massachusetts in 1915, and was among the first to recognize the work of playwright Eugene O’Neill, a pioneer of realism in the American theatre.

Anderson, the daughter of Dick and Sue Anderson, grew up in Webster City. She holds a B.A. in English from the University of Iowa, and an M.A. and Ph.D. from the Indiana University-Bloomington.

She remembers Webster City as “a good place to grow up. I found supportive teachers in both English and science.”

Anderson has been a professor of English at Grand Valley State University in Grand Rapids, Michigan for the last 20 years.

Saturday’s lecture was generously sponsored by Schlotfeldt Engineering, which was founded in Webster City in 1973. Today, the firm, managed by Wayne Schlotfeldt, has four offices in Iowa and South Dakota.

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