Essay on A Streetcar Named Desire By Tennessee Williams

Essay on A Streetcar Named Desire By Tennessee Williams

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Tennessee Williams tells a story of a battle with fantasy and reality through his characters in A Streetcar Named Desire. When the reader is first introduced to the character of Blanche DuBois, she portrays herself as sincere and fragile. Blanche shows up at the house of her sister Stella and her husband Stanley’s home with the intent of staying at their home for a lengthy amount of time. Blanche tells Stella that she has lost Belle Reve, an ancestral home, after the death of many of their relatives and also mentions she has been given a leave of absence from her job as a school teacher because of her bad nerves, “I was so exhausted by all I’d been through my --- nerves broke. I was on the verge of --- lunacy, almost! So Mr. Graves – Mr. Graves is the high school superintendent – he suggested I take a leave of absence (Williams 97).” Stanley questions Blanche’s motives from the beginning and throughout the story. This creates tension between these two characters, which is symbolic of the theme of the characters battle between fantasy and reality. Stanley becomes aware of events from Blanche’s past and tells his wife of what he has learned. When confronted by Stanley by the information he has learned about her, Blanche is forced to acknowledge the reality she has been so desperate to ignore. Instead of facing reality, Blanche chooses to withdrawal completely from reality into her own fantasy. This is Blanche’s way of shielding herself from the harsh reality that has become her life.
In Death of a Salesman, the reader is given a glimpse into what Arthur Miller believes to be the reasoning behind tragedies. Willy Loman is a man that has lived his life trying to achieve the easily attainable American Dream of success and wealth. Ye...


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... is significant because Hulga had not taken her wooden leg off for anyone. This moment is described as Hulga “surrendering to him completely” and “like losing her own life and finding it again, miraculously, in his” (O’Connor 456-457). After Hulga removes her leg, Manley’s true identity becomes known. He refuses to return Hulga’s leg to her and reveals to her the inside of his bible, which is hollow and “contained a pocket flask of whiskey, a pack of cards, and a small blue box with printing on it (O’Connor 457).” Mrs. Hopewell and her employee, Mrs. Freeman watch Manley Pointer as he leaves the barn. Mrs. Freeman captures the theme of the story in her last words of the story. A person is always more than what they seem at first glance. A reader might interpret Mrs. Freeman words as seeing Manley Pointer for what he truly he is and not as simple as he seems to be.

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