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Significance of the title "A Streetcar Named Desire"

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  • Essay length: 983 words
  • Submitted: 20/05/2012
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AS and A Level A Street Car Named Desire

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What, for you, is the significance of the title, A Streetcar Named Desire?

Throughout the play, A Streetcar Named Desire, there are many symbols and allusions that point the reader or the audience towards Blanche's true nature. One of these is the title itself. Not only is it unusual, it is basically the plot of the play and Desire is what eventually drives Blanche over the edge, amongst other things.

In the opening scene, Blanche takes a 'Streetcar named Desire, then transfer(s) to one called Cemeteries and get(s) off at Elysian Fields'. Not only is Desire the vehicle that transports Blanche to her sister, Stella, it is literally what drives her to the Kowalski's doorstep. Right from the beginning, 'Desire' is linked to 'Cemeteries', in other words, death. As Blanche rightly says, 'the opposite of desire, is death'. 'Elysian Fields' refers to paradise, where Blanche hopes to end up. The day after brutal 'poker night', Stanley sneaks in under the noise of the train to hear Stella and Blanche talking about him. It is effectively Blanche's desire that deafens her from hearing Stanley's entrance. When Stella asks Blanche if she has 'ever ridden on that streetcar', Blanche

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