Streetcar Named Desire

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In A Streetcar Named Desire by Tennessee Williams, the main characters have a difficult time facing reality. Blanche DuBios, Stanley Kowalski, and Stella Kowalski live different lives, but are all stuck within their own fantasy worlds. In this story, Williams shows that too much fantasy can lead to devastation.

Blanche has been fired from her job as a school teacher for sleeping with a student. She has been kicked out of her town for being a prostitute. Blanche needs to feel young and secure. She ends up at her sister, Stella's, home, lonely and full of lies. Because of all her made up stories, Stella does not believe it when Blanche says Stella's husband raped her. This causes Stella to force Blanche to leave. She tells her she will be going to rest in the country but she is really going to a mental institution. Although Blanche is upset at first she becomes calm and says, “I have always depended on the kindness of stranger.” She has become completely disconnected from reality. She believes this is the man she's been waiting for to save her.

In the beginning, Stanley seems to be a respectable man. He seems like a hard worker and a loving husband. However, it first becomes evident that this is untrue when Stanley beats his wife. Later it is completely apparent when he rapes his sister-in-law, Blanche. He gambles and drinks too much, as well. Stanley makes himself believe he is a good man by being loyal to his friends, like when he told Mitch about Blanche's past. He thinks he is a good husband because he and Stella have great sex and he provides her with a home.

Stella lives in her own version of this reality. She looks at her husband as a provider, a wonderful lover, and the father to her unborn child. She initially leaves when he beats her but she comes back to him after he begs her. Stella refuses to believe Blanche when she tells her of the rape. She has no other choice but to live this way because without all that she receives from Stanley, she has...
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