Tennessee William’s 1947 play A Streetcar Named Desire takes place in Elysian Fields, New Orleans, and portrays the marital situation of this time. This play illustrates conflict over the marriage of Stella and Stanley. This marriage can be seen as strict, and controlling but also full of lust. Stella’s sister, Blanche, sees through the illusion and can see how toxic the marriage really is. Stanley and Blanche come from distinctly different backgrounds, Stanley is from the working class while Blanche comes from wealth. Williams uses these two contrasting points of views on marriage, to show the issues of possessiveness, class, and sexism.
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.
The play “A Streetcar Named Desire” is about an emotionally unstable lady named Blanche. She moves in with her youngest sister and her husband because the landlord took the land away from Blanche because they could not pay for it anymore. After being their for a while Blanche starts remembering her horrible past which is something she was trying to do in the first place. The husband of Stella, Stanley Kowalski was also someone that made Blanche’s life miserable for complicating everything and harassing her in every possible way.
In literature, the presence the outsider can be traced from ancient Greek dramas to modern literature, from Medea to the Underground Man. Most of the literary works pertaining to the outsider focus on the conflict between the outsider and the insider, conflicts that arise from the Otherness of the outsider. For example, in Jane Eyre, the Otherness of the titular protagonist—her fiery spirit and her subverting idea of equality based on individual merits rather than social status—leads to her alienation and conflicts with the insider wherever she goes. However, Tennessee Williams, in A Streetcar Named Desire, explored a different dynamic—namely the conflict between two outsiders, Stanley Kowalski and Blanche DuBois. In the domestic sphere
The late 1940’s were characterized by the emergence out of World War II that led to a dependence on the idea of The American Dream, which meant men were working harder to achieve a more comforting lifestyle and opportunity while women were still fighting the oppression of caused by unequal representation. This idealistic dream is illustrated throughout Tennessee Williams’ “A Streetcar Named Desire”, which has a rigid dichotomy between illusion and reality revealed throughout multiple characters and their dysfunctional lives that are a direct result between fantasy and actuality.
William’s play A Streetcar Named Desire presents a variety of perspectives on relationships, especially addressing the idea that bonds which aren’t bound by trust, loyalty and lust in an even balance will inevitably fail. Tennessee Williams uses the interaction between his characters, predominantly Blanche, Mitch, Stella and Stanley; to express a variety of ideas regarding relationships. These connections can be witnessed in scenes 2, 3, 6 and 11, through the use of stage directions, dialogue and expressionism to display different perspectives of character interaction.
Gender and power are quite distinctive from one another in both these texts. From one point of view it could be argued the men are the autocrats and considered as oppressors of females in the male dominated society. In the male dominated society men are the decision makers and have the instrumental role. Despite benefitting from the patriarchy they are still victims (Synnot n. p.).This is because to secure his place in the family, a man has to dominate over his children and wife, therefore faced with a choice between the two sexual dispositions, and a boy has to choose between his mother and father.
Playwright Tennessee Williams once said “a symbol in a play has only one legitimate purpose which is to say a thing more directly and simply and beautifully than it could be said in words”. He seems to take his own advice to heart when writing such a thought provoking play as A Streetcar Named Desire. While Williams makes extensive use of symbols in Streetcar, the use of animals and animal-like characteristics as a symbol are constantly used to define Stanley Kowalski’s character and convey his desires as primal and ferine.
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. The play takes place in the 1950s in New Orleans containing a diverse population. However, is race discriminated against, those who go against classifed gender roles are often discriminated and have trouble finding their way in society. Although gender equality has
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. Blanche’s personality makes her live in the past acting as a “southern belle” and believing millionaire Shep Huntleigh will marry her unfortunately for Blanche living in the past meant she ended up in a state institution. Stella is a good example of past and present intertwined as he past was living in Belle Reive a plantation as a “southern belle” and now her present is in New Orleans and married to a husband who abusive. The character of Mitch a hard worker whom looks after his ill mother seems to the reader as a decent person with past and present intertwined personality he is respectful at the start to win Blanche
In the play A Streetcar Named Desire written by Tennessee Williams, the main character, Blanche DuBois, travels to New Orleans to stay with her sister, Stella, and Stella’s husband, Stanley Kowalski. Throughout the play, sexulaity is seen as a strong motivator for many of the characters actions. Early in the play, Stanley is introduced as a particularly sexual character, “ Since earliest manhood the center of his life has been pleasure with women, the giving and taking of it, not with weak indulgence...He sizes women up with a glance, with sexual classifications…” (Williams 25). Stanley’s sexuality affects Stella and Blanche heavily throughout the play. Blanche’s own sexuality and that of her late husband’s also contributes significantly to her life. The interactions between the main characters amplify the statement that sexuality is a primitive, powerful force, capable of creating or destroying life.
“I don’t want realism, I want magic”- Blanche DuBois (Williams 145). In A Streetcar Named Desire, Tennessee Williams presents readers with the acute presence of fantasy in individuals’ lives. Every character fabricates fantasies in his life to gloss over his struggles and forget each other 's flaws. A Streetcar Named Desire evaluates individual’s use of fantasy as a crutch to avoid the hard truths and give purpose to an empty life.
A streetcar named desire was written by Tennessee Williams in 1947, in purpose to show the “declining of the upper class and the domination of the bourgeois middle class in the U.S.A. where the south agriculture class could not compete with the industrialization.” Blanche Dubois the protagonist of our story, a southern beauty that is trapped by the restrictive laws of her society. But she broke them, and eventually put herself in a state, where she had no job and no house. So she had to go to her sister, Stella and live with her and her sister’s husband, Stanley. While staying there, she created a façade for her to hide her flaws and kept acting as a lady, where she is anything but that. To hide her true self, Blanche restored to duplicity, coupled with her voracious desire and ubiquitous deception caused her a breakdown. In the following paragraphs, there will be more events that led Blanche to such end.
A Street Car Named Desire is a play written by Tennessee Williams, which slowly uncovers Blanche’s prior life. Her troubled past causes her a lot of trouble when she tries to start over. She used to work as a teacher in Mississippi, however, she was forced to leave after she was caught having an affair with one of the students. This was typical behavior for Blanche since she had previously taken many lovers. Since she had such a hard time in Mississippi, she decides to move to New Orleans to live with her sister, Stella, and her husband, Stanley, in hopes of escaping her past. Stella accepts her willingly, however, Stanley begins to hear rumors. Blanche starts to date one of Stanley’s friends, Mitch, but when Stanley informs him about her past, Mitch basically tells her
After having been performed at the Ethel Barrymore Theater in 1946, A Streetcar Named Desire brought about much controversy. At first it seemed that much of the controversy stemmed from the unpleasantness with which the subject was presented, such as the vulgar, unprecedented topics acted out on stage. George Jean Nathan, an original critic of the play, touched upon the vulgar manner of the drama, calling it “The Glands Menagerie.” (Bak, “Criticism on a Streetcar Named Desire”) Perhaps the more pressing reason as to why this play was received controversially, however, is a result of its cynical nature. Playwright, Tennessee Williams, used his own suffering and cynical nature to create this play. Many of the characters’ personalities were created