Desire In Streetcar Named Desire

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Philip C. Kolin, an English critic and author, hailed Streetcar as: “the most creative new play….the one that reveals the most talent, the one that attempts the most truth. Not surprisingly, Streetcar quickly became a staple on the world stage, one of the major theatrical experiences and experiments of the twentieth century” (Kolin2).
Streetcar Named Desire was published just after World War II. When the play came out, the country had just emerged from the war after struggling through the Great Depression of the 1930's, and suddenly the national spotlight concentrated on the lower and middle classes as the true bearers of the heroic American spirit. Throughout much of the literature of the 1930's and 1940's, the focus on the middle and lower
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Desire is exactly what Blanche has followed. "Desire" is the basic driving force in the play. Blanche's own desires for position, money, love, sex, youth, and much more is exactly what drags her to the bottom of her misery. Stanley's desire for power is what makes him treat women like objects, and what ultimately leads him to rape Blanche and basically destroy her life. And as a result, Blanche has experienced a kind of death, indicated in the name of Cemeteries. Now, she has reached the Elysian Fields, which was the place where Greeks believed they went after death to ponder their life and face their mistakes. 'Elysian Fields' refers to paradise, where Blanche hopes to end up. (70).Hence, the importance of the title is that it shows that desire is the force what will lead the actions of the play, and the device that will end up changing or destroying the lives of each of the main characters. Desire leads to Cemeteries leads to the Elysian Fields which means Sex, death, and the afterlife…show more content…
In a tragedy, the protagonist confronts failure, usually through fate or outside circumstances. In this play, Blanche is the protagonist and Stanley is her antagonist who causes her tragic end or downfall; by exposing Blanche's past and raping her. The rape was the only way that Stanley could dominate Blanche and reduces her to his level. Blanche's Tragic Flaws include her desire which arises because of her loneliness which she endures after her husband's tragic death, her lack of self-awareness, low self-esteem, and that she has sold herself through dependence on men (Kolin9-10). Blanch is insecure and looks in everywhere for a male protector. She hopes to find a life for herself, including an appropriate husband; at the end of the play, she has realized the painful truth that she cannot even get support or sympathy from her own sister Stella and brother-in-law, and because of them, she will never find a husband as they put her in a mental asylum. She has learned that Stella and Stanley, in contrast to Old Southern tradition, are totally selfish; they adapt with their lives and cannot be disturbed with her or her problems. Indeed, they simply want her out of their life (15).A Streetcar Named Desire is also a kind of social realism because the play deals with many issues like immigration, class, gender roles, and power plays between
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