A Streetcar Named Desire

verascholten
Mind Map by verascholten, updated more than 1 year ago
verascholten
Created by verascholten over 5 years ago
106
8

Description

Mind Map on A Streetcar Named Desire, created by verascholten on 10/29/2014.

Resource summary

A Streetcar Named Desire
1 Context
1.1 Alcoholic dad
1.2 Mentally ill sister
1.3 alcoholism, depression, loneliness, insanity, homosexuality
1.4 Gay himself
1.5 Time/ place
1.5.1 Post-war America
1.5.2 South
2 Characters
2.1 Blanche
2.1.1 fallen woman

Annotations:

  • lost estate, belle reve, gay husband
2.1.1.1 self-destruction
2.1.2 social pariah

Annotations:

  • indiscrete sexual behaviour
2.1.3 double standards

Annotations:

  • She goes after what is bad for her, sexual desires, while she claims to want security.
2.1.4 depends on men
2.1.5 afraid of mortality
2.1.6 aristocratic background
2.1.6.1 class difference
2.1.6.1.1 male-dominated society NO: class difference does not matter
2.2 Stanley
2.2.1 animalistic
2.2.2 New America: social leveller
2.2.3 bad amusements
2.2.4 family man
2.3 Mitch
2.3.1 sensitive and decent
2.3.2 clumsy, unromantic
2.3.2.1 not B's ideal man
2.3.2.1.1 they share need for companionship
2.3.3 snare is sexual

Annotations:

  • after hearing about Blanche's promiscuous past Mitch feels angry and embarrased. Therefore he believes he deserves to have sex with Blanche during the rape scene, He no longer respects her enough to be his wife. 
2.3.4 cares for B
3 Themes
3.1 1. Fantasy's inability to overcome reality

Annotations:

  • -Blanche is lying to herself and pretending to be something else.  - Stanley does everything to unravel her secrets. OVERALL: reality is revealed. In the last scene Williams demonstrates that fantasy is important too by letting B retreat in her own imaginary world to shield herself from the harsh blows of reality.
3.2 2. The relationship between Sex and Death

Annotations:

  • -Blanche has a fear for mortality (aging). She does not want her  beauty to fade. This is expressed in her fear of light, not wanting to reveal her true age and the sex with younger men. This way she hopes to avoid death and aging and return to her world of teenage bliss.
  • -Her lifelong pursuit of SEXual desires have led to her eviction of Belle Reve, her ostracism from Laurel and her expulsion from society. - Her husbands homoSEXuality leading to suicide. - Blanche's downfall is caused by her fear of mortality and her inability to react appropriately to sexual desires.
3.3 3. Dependence on men

Annotations:

  • Stelle and Blanche both depend on men. Blanche regocnizes that Stella might be happier without Stanley but does not apply this to herself. She does not realize that her dependence on men will lead to her downfall rather than her salvation. She puts her fate in the hands of others.
4 Motifs
4.1 1. light

Annotations:

  • Blanche avoids bright lights to cover up her fading beauty and age. To avoid reality.Her intoleration to bright light represents her grasp on reality that is nearing its end.
4.1.1 Paper lantern

Annotations:

  • B uses a paper lantern to cover bright light.
4.1.2 bright vs dim light

Annotations:

  • In scene 6 Blance says that her time with her husband and making love to him was like a bright light. Having sex with others always happened in dim light. Her past with her husband is like a bright light. The rest is dim, less fun. 
4.2 2. bathing

Annotations:

  • -Bathing calms Blanche's nerves. - It cleanses her of her past but as her past can not be erased, the bathing never ends. - Stanleys shower after beating Stella calms him down and makes him feel remorse. 
4.3 3. Drunkeness

Annotations:

  • Stanley: social drunk, during poker. He also comes out for it in the public.  Blanche: anti-social. She tries to hide it. She also drinks to withdraw from reality. For both of them it leads to destructive behaviour. Only Stanley knows  how to rebound while it partially leads to Blanche;s downfall. 
5 Symbols
5.1 1. Shadows and Cries

Annotations:

  • In Scene 10 the shadows and jungle noises add a dramatic effect to Blanche's downfall into madness.
5.2 2. Varsouviana Polka

Annotations:

  • The polka plays at moments when B is feeling remorse for Allan's death. It represents B's loss of innocence and the event that triggered her mental decline. From the moment Blanche tells Mitch about it, it starts to play more often.
5.2.1 Polish
5.2.2 Allan

Annotations:

  • Blanche and Allan were dancing to this polka the last time she saw him alive. During their dance Blanche told him she was disgusted by him and then Allan ran off and shot himself.
5.3 3. 'It's only a paper moon'

Annotations:

  • A song that B sings in bath on her birthday. The lyrics are about how love turns into a phony fantasy. This is applicable to B's life.
5.4 4. Meat

Annotations:

  • Scene 1: Stanley throws a package of meat at Stella. This represents his sexual proprietorshiip he holds over Stella. Stella laughs and catches it. This indicates her sexual infatuation with him.
6 Technique
6.1 punchlines
6.2 Tone

Annotations:

  • Blanche is portrayed as somewhat silly. But this makes the audience cry rather than laugh. We feel bad for her.
6.2.1 sympathetic approach
6.3 Writing style

Annotations:

  • This comes across best in his stages directions, which he makes very detailed. He doesn't hold back.  he strikes at the heart of characters with his detailed descriptions
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