How does the setting contribute to the theme of the story?

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The play is set in rural America where neighbors are separated by miles. This rural isolation is an apt setting for the emotional and physical isolation that Mrs. Wright feels. Her abusive husband adds yet another layer of isolation that Mrs. Wright must contend with,

But I don't think a place'd be any cheerfuller for John Wright's being in it.

Much like the dead bird in the cage, Mrs. Wright also felt imprisoned in this isolated setting.