A Streetcar Named Desire shows a turbulent confrontation between traditional values in the American South - an old-world graciousness and beauty running decoratively to seed - set against the rough-edged, aggressive materialism of the new world. Through the vividly characterised figures of Southern belle Blanche Dubois, seeking refuge from physical ugliness in decayed gentility, and her brutal brother-in-law Stanley Kowalski, Tennessee Williams dramatises his sense of the South's past as still active and often destructive in modern America. This revised edition features a new production history of the play that considers both stage and screen presentations, an updated bibliography and extensive notes on the language of the play. Commentary and notes by Patricia Hern and Michael Hooper.
Seminar paper from the year 2009 in the subject English Language and Literature Studies - Literature, grade: 2,3, University of Wuppertal, course: American Literature, language: English, abstract: 1. In the play "A Streetcar Named Desire", written by Tennessee Williams, the protagonist Blanche DuBois comes to New Orleans to visit her sister Stella, who is married to the Pole Stanley Kowalski. Blanche ́s life has collapsed after the suicide of her husband Allan and the loss of the family estate Belle Reve. Blanche is not able to have a sexual relationship anymore and cannot understand the sexual connection between Stella and Stanley. She begins a romance with Mitch, one of Stanley ́s friends, but only with the aim of marrying him. But when he gets to know that she had affairs with strangers and with one of her students in the past, he is not willing to marry her anymore. At the end of the play, Blanche is raped by Stanley which leads to Blanche ́s final psychic collapse.
Seminar paper from the year 2008 in the subject American Studies - Literature, grade: 1,3, Catholic University Eichstatt-Ingolstadt (Sprach- und Literaturwissenschaftliche Fakultat), language: English, abstract: A Streetcar Named Desire is a lyrical drama about the decline and fall of Blanche DuBois." (Londre, 1979: 78). In this quotation Felicia Hardison Londre indicates that both the character and the inner development of the protagonist Blanche are the focus of attention in "A Streetcar Named Desire." At first glance, Blanche DuBois may seem superficial, even a bit ridiculous on account of the importance she attributes to her looks and to her former social status. However, in my way of thinking, the protagonist's behaviour is in a certain way symptomatic of society itself, even of humanity as a whole. That may be why "Walcott Gibbs referred to A Streetcar Named Desire as 'a brilliant impacable play about the disintegration of a woman, or if you like, of a society.'" (Nelson 1961: 121). Therefore, I consider it crucial to allow insight into the multiple facets of Blanche's personality. All the same, before approaching the caracterization, it is in my opinion necessary to provide you with some basic information about the writer of the play and its contents."
Insight Study Guides are written by experts and cover a range of popular literature, plays and films. Designed to provide insight and an overview about each text for students and teachers, these guides endeavor to develop knowledge and understanding rather than just provide answers and summaries.
Seminar paper from the year 2009 in the subject English - Literature, Works, grade: 1,7, RWTH Aachen University (Institut fur Anglistik I), course: Hauptseminar "American Drama," language: English, abstract: Tennessee Williams, born Thomas Lanier Williams, is not only known for being a "talented, perceptive and influential American playwright" (Day 1987, vii), but also for his frequent use of symbols. "A Streetcar Named Desire" (1947), the work which will be dealt with in this paper, is a good example for of usage, since it contains a lot of different kinds of symbolism, for example concerning colours, names, music and many more. Numerous works will be found, if anyone searches for essays about symbolism in Williams' works. Moreover, it is common knowledge that Streetcar is a play which deals not only superficially with a woman going insane, but a play which "bring s] into violent contrast a neurotic woman's dream world and the animalistic realism of her brother-in-law" (back of the book in the Diesterweg edition). But since there does not seem to be any work which deals with the question of how exactly Williams drew this contrast by use of symbolism, it will be my aim in this paper to analyse this question. Consequently, I will try to point out the main symbols with which Williams underlined the contrast between realism and illusion, especially considering names, colours, clothes, light, music and certain rituals of the main characters. In the second part of this paper, I will deal with the question to what degree the main characters Stanley and Blanche are strictly opposed to each other or may have something in common. I will also deal with the meaning of the ending concerning realism and illusion. Therefore, what will be discussed are the most striking antinomies and similes in the main characters' attitudes. A general conclusion about the topic of symbolism in Tennessee Williams' Streetcar will be given in the end. To introduce the reader to the topic an"