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Look again at Scene 9 of Streetcar named desire - How do you imagine you would feel as a member of an audience witnessing this scene? How does T.W. evoke these feelings in his audience?

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Introduction

Look again at Scene 9 of 'Streetcar'. How do you imagine you would feel as a member of an audience witnessing this scene? How does T.W. evoke these feelings in his audience? Scene 9 of 'A Streetcar Named Desire' is a tense scene that runs up to a climatic end. In this scene, Mitch finally learns the truth about Blanche. In the starting directions of this scene, Blanche is depicted as being, 'seated in a tense hunched position,' which is similar to her initial arrival to the house, in scene 1, in which she sits, 'very stiffly.' This is a reference to the nervousness Blanche feels, and a feeling of uncertainty and incongruousness that relates back to the feelings she felt on her arrival. The reference to the 're-covered' chair is yet again another depiction of Blanche's attempts to cover up the truth, and bare reality. The 'Varsouviana' plays 'in her mind,' and this, and the 'scarlet satin,' blood coloured robe, serve to remind the audience of the death of her husband, Allan. Blanche is overcome with a 'sense of disaster,' such as the one she felt when she lost her first love through, she feels, her own doing. Once again, she feels she has lost out on the chance to love, and being stood up by Mitch throws her in that she knows of the precocious nature of her past, and no matter how much she runs, she knows she cannot escape it. ...read more.

Middle

He is a representation of the 'heat' felt throughout the book, in this scene. In this scene we are brought back to the imagery used previously in the book of Stanley lighting a cigarette and allowing the light to play on his face, when here Mitch 'plumps himself down' impolitely and 'lights a cigarette.' We almost feel Mitch has become Stan in his actions and he has gone from his polite self to an animal. Mitch lets on here that he knows at least some of the truths about Blanche when he immediately refers to the liquor as 'Stan's liquor.' Unfortunately, we still see Blanche keep up her fa�ade when she says, 'I don't know what there is to drink.' After Mitch announces this remark, Blanche's feeling of dread felt at the start of the scene returns. She ask hastily, 'Isn't your mother well?' as this is the only other thing she can think of that would make Mitch be this way with her, without Blanche actually having to confront the truth of what has happened. However, Blanche knows what is wrong with Mitch when he does not announce his mother's illness and merely replies 'Why?' and so the 'Varsouviana' which is representative of all the feelings of loss and unhappiness in Blanche's life starts up in her head. 'A distant revolver shot is heard' in Blanche's head, and she plays out the scene in which she lost love over and over again in her head, as she feels she has once again lost any chance of comfort and safety. ...read more.

Conclusion

These words, combined with 'the polka tune' bring the scene a great feeling of loss, and of ending, just as Blanche's last chance for love has ended. The Mexican woman speaks at key points in Blanche's speech about Belle Reve, her 'beautiful dream,' peppering the speech with death and flowers, a great contrast of beauty and of loss. Blanche's speech talks about 'desire' being the opposite to death, and Blanche wanted to get away from death so experienced as much 'desire' as possible. This speech leads us on to our climax event, in which Mitch is '[fumbling to embrace her]' sexually so he can get what he wants out of her. He now believes she is 'not clean enough to bring in the house' with his mother so simply wants what he believes he is rightly owed for his summer of devotion to her. This shatters all of Blanche's illusions, and she is becoming overcome with 'hysteria' and tells Mitch to get out. Her scream of 'Fire! Fire! Fire!' is a reference to the themes of sex and desire in this play in a sharp contrast to the 'soft summer light' outside of the window. Blanche almost pollutes this scene of tranquility with desire and passion. As Mitch runs away, the 'slow and blue' music returns as this is how Blanche now feels, defeated and depressed. The climax has passed, and now the audience feels only sadness for Blanche, who is left alone. ...read more.

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