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Blanche appears in the amber light of the door. She has a tragic radiance in her red satin robe following the sculptural lines of her body. The Varsouviana rises audibly as Blanche enters the bedroom. With reference to the above stage direct

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Introduction

Essay Question: Blanche appears in the amber light of the door. She has a tragic radiance in her red satin robe following the sculptural lines of her body. The "Varsouviana" rises audibly as Blanche enters the bedroom. With reference to the above stage direction, discuss Williams' presentation of Blanche in the final scene of the play. Deluded and hysterical, Blanche has fully unraveled, her complexity stripped away for the audience to see her as she really is. Blanche's ultimate demise is imminent, which is to be witnessed cruelly by the whole cast. However her strength still shines through; she hasn't yet been defeated. In the final scene of "A Streetcar Named Desire" the playwright Tennessee Williams gives a more simple presentation of Blanche which he achieves through his use of various dramatic strategies. With nowhere else to turn for solace Blanche attempts to create illusions which become blurred with reality. At the beginning of the scene Blanche is "bathing" no longer trying to "cleanse" her conscience instead her baths become a desperate attempt to wash off the horror of Stanley's violation. ...read more.

Middle

Blanche talks of the "old Madonna pictures" obviously invoking a sense of irony. Recalling Blanche's earlier mention of her being born "under Virgo" the audience sees that Blanche clings to her belief that she is still pure and virginal despite her promiscuity. Although she is the most corrupt character in the play she still believes she can still attain a sense of purity. When Blanche asks "are these grapes washed?" she doesn't wish to poison her pure soul with unclean grapes. The sound device of the "cathedral bells" and Blanche description of them being the "only clean thing in the Quarter" reinforces her attempts to be seen as clean and holy. Her wish to be buried at sea in a "clean white sack" emphasises her desire to be clean and pure. Scarred deeply by Stanley's act Blanche has lost any connection with reality; attempting to hide from those who have caused her fall from grace. The dramatist's stage direction "the sound of this new voice shocks Blanche" portrays her immense fear of Stanley due to his violation of her. ...read more.

Conclusion

As the "lurid reflections appear on the wall" the audience is reminded of Stanley's violation of her and feels sympathy for her. When Stanley "seizes the paper lantern, tearing it off the light bulb" Blanche's deception ends and her artifice is stripped away. The paper lantern that symbolized Blanche's attempts to keep cold reality at bay has now been destroyed and she can no longer hide in the shadows of deception. Stanley is unable to accept Blanche's deceptive nature and destroys her illusion "as if the lantern was herself". The lantern is therefore a metaphor for Blanche's personality which in the end Stanley cruelly destroys. Despite her delusion Blanche is allowed to leave with her dignity by the doctor who is able to stabilize her. Although the rest of her has been taken from her during her stay in the Kowalski world Blanche is able to leave with her honour and dignity. Blanche, now deluded and scarred due to Stanley's act, is left disconnected from reality creating illusions to keep this reality at bay. In her degradation Blanche retains a core of dignity about her, but is crushed by a world that is harsher and more ruthless than she can cope with. Words: 1,104 ?? ?? ?? ?? Streetcar Named Desire Angus Frew ...read more.

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