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A Street Car Named Desire : Blanche's Illusions

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Introduction

A Street Car Named Desire : Blanche's Illusions Throughout the play, Blanche reveals that she has several illusions about herself. Her character and certain things that she does show that she is perhaps not 'fully there', and has certain perceptions of herself that she tries to show to others as being a reality when in fact it they are all really just in her mind. I think that Blanche uses drink as a get away. In the first few scenes there are several references both in the dialogue and in the stage directions to her drinking. I think that drink is her way to escape reality. When she drinks she can forget and when she forgets she is free and can forget her past and the things that she has done. In scene one as soon as she greets Stella before they really get talking she says 'Open your pretty mouth and talk while I look around for some liquor'. She feels she needs the drink to be able to talk because without it she is nothing. ...read more.

Middle

Throughout the play Blanche takes several baths. I think that she does this for two reasons. The first links in with the importance that her clothes and jewelry play in her life. She wants to always look her best so taking baths refreshes her and cleans her body making her more attractive. The second is because she says it calms her nerves. With all the tension of loosing her job and Belle Reve her mind is constantly buzzing with everything. The baths calms these nerves down much like the drink. However because she cannot drink at all hours of the day without everyone getting suspicious she takes baths instead, almost killing two birds with one stone. At the end of the bath she feels more relaxed and more beautiful. In scene 9 Blanche says 'I don't tell the truth. I tell what ought to be the truth'. By this is think that she means that she says what the reality in her head is saying. In her head she still wants to be young, beautiful and desirable. Because she believes it so much in her own mind it has become a reality. ...read more.

Conclusion

In this passage she says that she will die at sea from eating an unwashed grape. She does not say that she will die of old age. I think that she doesn't ever want to get old because with age comes the deterioration of the body, and that is the first of her two worst fears. The second of these fears is that she will die alone and that is why she says 'I will die - with my hand in the hand of some nice-looking ship's doctor'. She does not want to age and she does not want to die alone. She can see it coming though and so she created all these stories to try and keep her sanity. Her speech about death shows what her worst fears are, and her illusions stop their reality. Blanches illusions are created by her to make the people around her perceive her in the way that she wants to be perceived. She wants to be seen as the young and beautiful Blanche that is admired by many young men. She never really wants to grow old and wither away, but most of all she doesn't want to die alone. Her magnificent illusions are her only comfort in her aging loneliness. ...read more.

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