Strength, lack of emotion, aggression, and confidence are some of the traits society has assigned to men. The play A Streetcar Named Desire uses its lead character to support and portray these traits. The play takes place in the late 1940’s, a time when men and masculinity played a significant role in both households and society. Stanley Kowalski, the leading male, displays the timely masculine qualities while also showing what affect masculinity can have on those around him. Stanley is strong willed and very opinionated, allowing him to treat both men and women in a disrespectful way. Masculinity is most prominently defined at and around the kitchen table, in Stanley and Stella’s flat, through dialogue and physical actions. Stanley’s dialogue …show more content…
Over time, Stanley has become less and less amused with Blanche and Stella’s relationship. He clearly sees that their relationship is giving her strength to stand up to him and no longer accept the way things are. The relationship she has doesn’t do so much harm as it’s making Stella less submissive and worshiping of Stanley. Stella kindly asks Stanley to “Go wash up and then help clear the table.” (pg 131, Williams) Feeling that she’s asked too much of him, something that would’ve never been done before Blanche came, he suddenly “hurls his plate at the floor,” “seizes her arm,” and yells, “That’s how I’ll clear the table!” (pg 131, Williams) This action speaks louder than words and not only shows that he feels he can treat her any way he’d like but, it also shows that he feels this is women’s work and not men’s. When Blanche and Stella says Stanley is “making a pig of himself” and is “disgustingly greasy,” he gets offended easily. Again, feeling that this would never have been said if Blanche hadn’t come, he yells at Stella, “Don’t ever talk that way to me!,” which is an attempt to reclaim his power. (pg 131,
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That is why he hates Blanche because she is not the same as the girls he has seen. He sees her as a threat in the sense that she will ruin the marriage between Stella and Stanley. However, he has feelings of self conscious and feels threatened because he feels like she can ruin him. He hates that Stella and Blanche were always wealthy and he feels as if they look down on him for being poor. He does not feeling submissive which is why he reacts harshly most of the time.
She brings this sense of superiority to Stella who unintentionally tries to distinguish her background from Stanley as well. Stanley recognizes the fact that Blanche looks down on him forcing him to assert his masculinity over her. Stanley’s dominance over the household and Stella is being questioned upon Blanche’s
Stanley thought money was going to fix the issue. Blanche still continued to get into Stellas head about him but she wasn’t trying to hear it. Blanches independency was what created space between her and Stella because of their opposite views on situations. And due to that fact, Stella saw Blanche as a judgemental
Tennessee Williams wrote “A Streetcar Named Desire” (Williams, 1947) It is based in New Orleans a new cosmopolitan city which is poor but has raffish charm. The past is representing old south in America 1900’s and present is representing new America post world war 2 in 1940’s. Past and present are intertwined throughout the play in the characters Stanley, Blanche, Stella and mitch. Gender roles show that males are the dominant and rule the house which Stanley is prime example as he brings home food and we learn of one time when he got cross and he smashed the light bulbs.
As soon as Blanche steps into the Kowalski household and meets Stanley, it is evident that her appearance is a threat to his superiority. Both characters attempt to establish dominance through their control over Stella, a minor character who exists mainly to deepen the contrast between Blanche and Stanley. In scene four, Blanche advises Stella to leave her abusive husband and attempts to influence her by saying “I have a plan for us both, to get us both—out!” (69).
In Blanche and Stanley’s initial interactions, there was an air of sexual tension. This tension dissipates completely as the play progresses, and their relationship turns into a resentful and hateful one. Throughout the play, Stanley has several violent outbursts towards Stella that worry Blanche. This allows Stanley to assert dominance over both women. At the end of the play, Stanley releases his pent up anger and frustration toward Blanche through a sexual attack.
She constantly refers to Stanley as a Polack, and reprimands Stella because she chooses to “hang back with the brutes,” when she, in reality, has a lower economic status than either of them. Blanche’s classist comments and lies display her insecurity in losing her place in the hierarchy of classism. Angering Stanely by her racist and classist claims, Blanche begins to boil the rage that leads to her vicious
The themes of violence and power in ‘A Streetcar Named Desire’ hold an important role in the criticism of 1940s American society. Conflicts perpetuated by violence and power, such as abusive relationships and violent oppression are projected through the characters within the play. Williams uses these conflicts to highlight his criticisms of faltering values and social norms, from the perspective of an individual constrained by the expectations of a strict, Southern society. To begin with, there is an indefinite violence between men and women within ‘A Streetcar Named Desire’. Stanley Kowalski, a focal character, is the epitome of male dominance and primitive aggression.
When he is questioned by Blanche in front of his friends he throws a fit, in a way that could be interpreted into showing off for his friends. He takes his anger out on Stella and hits her. After Stella leaves with Blanche, he calls for her nonstop until she finally comes back to him. He needs Stella just as much as she needs
Stanley continues to impose his reality onto Blanche, which causes her more anxiety relying more and more on herself to create more of an illusion by creating an admirer for herself, saying that she ended it with Mitch because she does not deserve “deliberate cruelty”, and crating this alter ego for herself as being pure. While Stella is in the hospital, he and Blanche are left alone for the night as she continues bragging about her admiration coming from Sheep Hunt Leigh and how she just got a wire from him. Stanley catches her in her life, finally tearing apart Blanche's illusions. Although Stanley has been a threat to her through his suspicion and empowering masculinity over her, the last scene is where he finally takes final control over her, or symbolically where reality has a final triumph over her illusions. While catching her in the midst of her lies she reveals to Blanche that “[he’s] been on to [Blanche] from the start!”
He had slaps her in her face, when Stanley is in front of his friends he get out of hand. He asks different in front of his wife Stella. In the real world, when men hang out with their friends, they feel like they are the boss, so they start to show out to proof that they are man enough to put women in there place. Knowing that when they are around their wife’s they act so different because if their friends see how men act, they would think that he is a coward. When Stanley is with Stella, he is sober and he is sweet and caring to her.
Stereotypical gender roles have existed as long as human culture has, becoming a natural part of all of our lives. Within each gender lies a variety of stereotypes and expectations. Most notably for men they are often depicted as tough and the family provider. Whereas women are often shown to be soft and vulnerable. Throughout the play A Streetcar Named Desire the author; Tennessee Williams illustrates the main characters, Stanley, Stella, Mitch and Blanche with these stereotypes.
In Scene 10, Blanche is begging Stanley to let her get by and he is not moving to let her through. Stanley says that he thinks Blanche would not be too bad to interfere with in a sexual way going back to Scene 6, when he would walk through the rooms in his underwear at night near Blanche. Blanche complained about the little bit of privacy she had in the house and that was exemplified when Stanley later picked her up and carried her into the bedroom. Blanche had thought in the beginning that her situation was frightful, but never to the degree in which she experienced towards the end of the
“A Streetcar Named Desire” is a very elegant film in which the Southern gothic culture is demonstrated profoundly. Tennessee Williams uses the characters in the play to bring about a sense of how corrupt society truly was in the 1940’s in the South. The 1940’s was marked by an immense amount of violence, alcoholism, and poverty. Women at the time were treated as objects rather than people. Throughout the play Tennessee Williams relates the aspects of Southern society to the characters in the play.