A Cascade of Emotions in Tennessee William's Play A Streetcar Named Desire

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Tennessee William’s play A Streetcar Named Desire presents a cascade of emotions focusing on Blanche DuBois, who tries to start fresh in New Orleans after losing Belle Reve. Throughout the play, audiences often feel conflicted with Blanche’s role, torn between sympathy for her losses and apathy of her strong sexual urges. One may argue that Blanche is the villain of the story, barging into Stella’s and Stanley’s lives and attempting to convince Stella to leave her husband. However, it is Blanche’s perspective whom Williams chooses to tell the story from. We ride along with Blanche as she makes the trip to visit her sister, resists change from the New South, and lets the tension build up around her. Our sympathies lie around Blanche as she struggles to fit into her sister’s life, tries to withhold some form dignity through mistakes from her past, but ultimately loses all connections around her as she tries to preserve her opinions about the Old South. Williams opens the play by focusing on the name of the streetcars as well as the name of places. Blanche leaves Belle Reve, takes Desire, then Cemeteries, before getting off at Elysian Fields. These names hold significance to the circle of events that encompasses Blanche’s life: the “desire” of sex leads to some form of “death” and forcing them to move on to “afterlife” where they start over. Blanche claims that her ancestors’ desire for sex kills the family fortune, which in turn caused forced her to lose Belle

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