Rape in a Good Man Is Hard to Find

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Rape is not a crime of irrational, impulsive, uncontrollable lust, but is a deliberate, hostile, violent act of degradation and possession on the part of a would-be conqueror, designed to intimidate and inspire fear (Susan Brownmiller). In Tennessee Williams “A Street Car Named Desire”, one of the main characters, Blanche, in this play goes through the experience of being raped and the effects that come from it. By Williams allowing Blanche to get rape in the play, it resulted in having a massive effect on the play and led to the downfall of the rest of play and of Blanche. I want to explore the reasoning and factors why the rape had such a effect in the play.

“We’ve had this date with other from the beginning!” (Williams 1464), these were the words that were said to Blanche right before being raped, the character that raped her was Stanley. At the start of the play Stanley could be seen as a egalitarian hero for the story, some of the reasons that this could happen is because of the loyalty to his friends and passion he had for his wife , Stella. He has a hatred towards Blanche once he begins to see what type of person she truly is, she can come off untrustworthy and attempts to fool everyone he knows into believing she is superior to them. Throughout the play, this hatred builds to a point where Stanley’s main goal is just to get rid of Blanche.

“Stanley brings about Blanche's downfall by unmasking her pretensions and her lies, by physically unclothing and raping her” (Lant). In a article called “A Streetcar Named Misogyny”, written by Kathleen Margaret Lant, she discuss how Stanley’s hatred towards Blanche is one of the main reason for her downfall. He goes to every extend to find out what Blanche true life was before she arrived in New Orleans. This hostility can be found in some of the actions he does towards Blanche, for example the investigations he does about her past, his birthday gift to her or him sabotaging her relationship with Mitch towards the...
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