Streetcar Named Desire Scene 11 Analysis

912 Words4 Pages
In my version of scene 12 of Tennessee Williams’s Streetcar Named Desire, Stella visits Blanche in the mental hospital that she and Stanley sent her away to three months earlier. When Stella arrives, she is unsure of what kind of mental state Blanche will be in. She finds out however, that Blanche believes she has been sailing with Shep Huntleigh, “How could you have visited? We’ve been sailing on the seas for almost three months now!” I chose to have Blanche use this scenario as a coping mechanism for being abandoned by her sister at the end of scene 11 because earlier in the same scene, she tells Stella and Eunice that she’s going to live on the sea with Shep Huntleigh: “I can smell the sea air. The rest of my time I’m going to spend on the…show more content…
In my scene she clearly says to Blanche, “I was very worried about you. I wasn’t sure if I had made the right decision.” This is consistent with the end of scene 11 when Stella protests the matron apprehending Blanche even though she had at least some part in planning it, “Don’t let them do that to her, don’t let them hurt her!” (140). It was the guilt and uncertainty she felt for sending Blanche away that made her question her relationship with Stanley. It is evident from my scene that Stella and Stanley still fight because in the stage directions for Stella while she’s talking about her life at home it says, “She brings her right elbow up to her chest and tenderly rubs it.” Suffice to say, the physical abuse from Stanley wouldn’t stop just because Blanche is gone, as it has been happening since their marriage. Her biggest conflict with Stanley would be whether or not sending Blanche to the mental hospital would actually help. While Stanley advocates it because he won the power struggle for Stella’s devotion at the end of scene 11, as said previously, Stella reluctantly let the Doctor take Blanche. So it might seem like Stella would leave Stanley at this point in the play, however, when she visits Blanche she decides to lean toward the fantasy side of life too. Although she can tell Blanche has been driven further into fantasy, she begins to think that maybe that’s not a bad thing. Blanche is happy…show more content…
I use the light motif throughout the scene, particularly used to represent how Blanche doesn’t see the reality of her life. When she is showing Stella what she believes are seashells the stage direction says, “she holds the rough gray pavement just below eye level, the ridges barely distinct in the dim lighting.” This is consistent with Williams’s use of light in the play because in the very first scene Blanche tells Stella, “Turn that over-light off! Turn that off! I won’t be looked at in this merciless glare!” (19). The “seashells” themselves are symbols for Blanche’s life: “The waves pushed them far away, but they reached land… so I took them under my wing naturally. Everyone needs someone to take care of them after going through so much.” In this metaphor, the seashells are Blanche and the waves are all those who wouldn’t accept her; Stanley, Mitch, and even Stella eventually. The way she “took them under my wing,” represents how she has had to rely on the care of strangers: “Whoever you are-- I have always depended on the kindness of strangers” (142). Finally, I use the paper lantern symbol to further the effect of the light motif in certain places. When Stella is asked about her fight with Stanley she, “crosses beneath the paper lantern, avoiding even the dim rays of light.” This shows that she is giving into fantasy and avoiding the

More about Streetcar Named Desire Scene 11 Analysis

Open Document