Sophie Treadwell: Machinal

(1533 words)

In 1914, while working as a reporter for the San Francisco Bulletin, Sophie Treadwell covered the trial against a woman named Leah Alexander, who stood accused of murdering her lover, J. D. Van Baalen. Two years later, writing for the New York American, Treadwell wrote a series of about sixteen articles while covering her second sensational murder case. This time Treadwell described the trial of Mrs. Elizabeth Blair Mohr, accused of hiring three men to murder her adulterous husband. Even before the trials began, the public opinion was clearly against these women who dared defied patriarchal notions of what a woman should be. In spite of the evidences proving the abuse suffered by both defendants, Alexander and Mohr, at …

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López-Rodríguez, Miriam. "Machinal". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 21 October 2005; last revised .
[, accessed 30 June 2015.]