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A Streetcar Named Desire by Tennessee Williams
Transcript of A Streetcar Named Desire by Tennessee Williams
About Tennesse Williams
A Bit about Tennessee Williams
There are 2 Streetcars:
1st. Desire: Blanches sexual desires is the reason for her leaving Belle Reve which brings her to Laurel
2nd. Cemeteries: Represents Blanches decline from society and down fall mentally
Elysian Fields: the street that Balnche arrives at for final destination
"Land of the Dead" (in greek mythology) represents Blanches "death" and explosion from society by being taken away.
Light is the concealer of Blanche's age
Represents her illusion of reality
Blanche describes her first love as the light of her life, as if before it were completely blind
Without love, her life would be dark
1. Dominance of men
2. Fear of death and sex
Blanches younger sister
No job, stay @ home wife
Lives in New Orleans with Stanley
About 25 years of age
Outspoken, but very reasonable personality
High School teacher in Laurel, MS
About 30 years old
Racists towards Stanley
Sexually active with many men
Lives her own reality
Personality-wise: Attention seeking and has a very low self esteem
Main Characters: cont.
Harold "Mitch" Mitchell
Stanley's friend from WW2, poker buddy, and co-worker
Around thirty years old
Very different than his friends: gentle and sensitive
Has a relationship with Blanche throughout the play
Literary Devices cont.
Illusion: "The Paper Moon"
by Harold Arlen
This song explains how love turns life into a fantasy. Blanche sings this throughout the play to describe the love she once had, and what she wants now that she is single and had lost her husband
William portrays sympathy towards Blanche
People feel bad for her; embarrassed
Ex's: she gets raped, she gets sent to a madhouse against her will, her husband shot himself, she cant find anyone and is lonely
Physical Meaning: "Desire" is the name of the streetcar Blanche takes to the Kowalksi's
Metaphorical Meaning: Blanche is brought to Kowalski's by her sexual desires.
Born in Mississippi in March, 1911
Moved to New Orleans to pursue writing
Alcoholic and Drug Abuser
Won many awards and prizes
One of the greatest play writers in American History
Blanche lives a life contradictory to how it really is
No one is a listener of Blanche's lies
EX: Blanche gets raped and no one believes her, sent to a mental hospital
About 30 years of age
Lives in New Orleans with Stella in an apartment
Mechanic, enjoys playing poker
Values the sexual relationship he and Stella have
Has hatrid towards Blanche
“From the land of the sky blue water,
They brought a captive maid!"
“Without your love,
Its a honky-tonk parade!
Without your love,
Its a melody played in a Penny arcade..."
The Kowalski's apartment is where the play takes place. It is located in New Orleans, Louisiana. This is also where Blanche stays throughout her visit to the Kowalski's. The play is also set in the 1940's.
Blanche was raped
Stella had her child
Blanche is now at a complete state of madness,
she even believes her own lies.
This is the point in time when the sexual tensions between Stanley and Blanche is finally cut
In analyzing literature, its all about sex...except sex. In this situation, its all about dominance; this connects to the theme of dominance of men
Despite Stanley's and Stella's differences, they continue on with their marriage
Stella is happy with her baby, also with the comfort of her husband
Things are settling now that Blanche has been taken to an institute to correct her state of mind
Blanche Dubouis arrives in New Orleans to see her sister, Stella Kowalski.
The conflict is between Blanche and Stanley, Stella's husband who tries to uncover Blanche's secrets.
Blanche comes to the Kowalski's, stirring Stella's and Stanley's sexual relationship
Its apparent that Blanche is hiding something
Loss of Belle Reve
Stanley and Blanche have intense sexual tension
Stanley and Blanche's relationship becomes antagonistic
“They told me to take a streetcar named Desire, and transfer to one called Cemeteries.” -Blanche (6.2)
The streetcar Blanche takes represents her life journey up until she arrives at her sisters home in New Orleans
Desire represents the sexual desires
Cemeteries represents her social death
Elysian Fields: the name of Stella's and Stanley's street
in Greek Mythology: Land of Death
“Whoever you are-I have always depended on the kindness of strangers.” -Blanche (178.4)
Talking to a male doctor; aka her "rescuer"
Irony: she thinks its Shep Huntleigh
Her dependence on other people's kindness results in her unhappiness
“What i am is one hundred percent American, born and raised in the greatest country on Earth and proud as hell of it, so don't ever call me a Pollack.” -Stanley (134.7)
Stanley is talking to Blanche, this is his remark as shes trying to imply shes a better person than he
Blanche trying to be superior
Died February 25, 1983 from OD of unidentified drugs
He was a homosexual
Flowers: In scene 9, a Hispanic woman tries to give Blanche flowers, particularly "flores para los muertos." The flowers symbolize Blanche's mental stability decline and foreshadows her "death"
Meat: In scene 1, Stanley throws a package of meat and Stella, which has a sexual innuendo. Representing Stella's lust for Stanley and the control Stanley has over Stella sexually.