• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

How Much Sympathy Does the Audience Feel for Blanche at the End of the Play?

Extracts from this document...


How Much Sympathy Does the Audience Feel for Blanche at the End of the Play? From the very first scene, we as the audience find ourselves sympathising with Blanche. Her first introduction into the play causes this sympathy. Williams describes Blanches appearance as 'daintily dressed in a white suit' with 'white gloves' and 'earrings of pearl'. From the first stage direction at the start of the play, a description has been created in our minds by Williams of New Orleans. It is a poor section with a 'raffish charm'. It is evident then that Blanche is not a character that will fit in here. Due to this fact, I feel sympathy for her as she has entered a world that is new and unknown to her. Williams describes Blanche as having 'delicate beauty' that 'must avoid a strong light'. The word 'delicate' suggests a great vulnerability and coupled with the fact that she is in a territory unknown to her means that she must feel afraid and foreign to the area and so again I sympathise with her character. I find it interesting that Williams chose to describe Blanche in a way that she 'must avoid a strong light'. He also refers to her as a 'moth'. This word is also associated with light and suggests to me that Blanche fears the light, as it will show her age. ...read more.


Due to this loss, I feel sympathy for Blanche. At the end of act one, we learn of another great loss she has suffered; 'The boy - the boy died'. The word 'boy' suggests this was a young romance, perhaps Blanches first love, perhaps her only love and it would be hard not to sympathise with her because of it. As Williams gradually reveals her past, I find myself sympathising with her more and more. Earlier on in the scene, Williams creates doubt within the audiences mind whether or not Blanche has ever experienced love: 'I guess that is what is meant by being in love...'. Williams, however, has written this so that the fact that Blanche had this immense relationship when she was younger which resulted in tragic circumstances comes as so much more of a shock to the audience. Due to this greater impact, the audience find themselves sympathising with her a lot more. Williams establishes Blanche as a character who cannot 'be alone'. She has 'got to be with somebody'. Many people can relate to this, as loneliness can be an awful thing to live with and so sympathise with her in that way. Throughout the first five scenes, Williams uses music such as 'the blue piano' to great effect. Te music is heard when emotions run high, particularly in the case of Blanche. ...read more.


She cannot 'go there on a rocket'; she must stay and face the imminent disaster she predicts. This reinforces the idea of fate established in the title 'A streetcar named desire'. Blanche is on this set destination leading to disaster and there is nothing she can do to stop it. Williams does, therefore, create great feelings of sympathy for Blanche within the audience. Blanche 'wants Mitch' so that she can 'breathe quietly again'. This again makes you feel sympathy for Blanche as Stella has a man in her life yet she does not and she is the oldest. This sympathy is, however, shattered by the fact that she risks losing Mitch by flirting with a 'young man' at the end of scene five. This could, however, be a sign of her insecurities once again. She needs to feel desired to boost her confidence with Mitch, though she goes about gaining this desire the wrong way. Mitch is her rescue boat from Stanley and her life alone. You must feel sympathy for Blanche as her life is on a course of destruction and no matter how hard she tries, she always ends up worse off than before. Williams cleverly uses metaphors to make certain points, for example, in scene five he writes, 'It foams over and spills. Blanche gives a piercing cry'. When he speaks of the drink foaming over I, personally, believe that he metaphorically is referring to the tension in the house. The tension is becoming too much for Blanche and she cannot control it. Ewan Stevenson feb 5th '04 ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE A Streetcar Named Desire section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE A Streetcar Named Desire essays

  1. Peer reviewed

    How much sympathy do we feel for Blanche in the opening scenes of the ...

    3 star(s)

    This is a big variation on the Stella we have seen with other characters, who always appears restless and fluttery, like a "moth". She suddenly appears much less animated and it is as if the real Blanche is being revealed.

  2. How does Tennessee Williams use of symbolism add to the dramatic impact at the ...

    her who found out about his homosexuality and as they were dancing she cursed him and blamed him for what he had done. This also gives the modern day audience an insight as to the attitude of people towards homosexuality in the time the play was written.

  1. Consider how Tennessee Williams attempts to engage the sympathy of the audience by the ...

    The quote 'A cat screeches. She catches her breath with a startled gesture' again emphasizes how nervous and afraid she is. She feels these nerves again during her first meeting with Stanley towards the end of scene one. This establishment of her feelings in the opening scene builds up sympathy within the audience as they start to feel for her situation.

  2. A Streetcar Named Desire - It is impossible to feel sympathy for Blanche.

    We think we have discovered all her secrets when she blurts that Belle Reve is lost and sympathize with her since all her relations are dead and she has lost the family house. However her paranoia about her looks and "In bed with your - Polak!"

  1. The character of Blanche in

    seem to indicate some deeper problem. We genuinely believe she has old - fashioned morals as she is so bothered and impressed by Stanley taking off his shirt that she vomits, we also believe that there is some horrible part to her past when she was married to a boy who died.

  2. How much sympathy do we feel for Blanche in the opening scenes of the ...

    Other developments early in the story help the audience to feel a sympathy for Blanche, although they are not entirely revealed at this stage. Blanche has had to deal with many deaths in her family and that of her young husband, the subject of which still holds emotional feelings for her.

  1. "It is impossible to feel sympathy for Blanche" - Discuss.

    and the story for the moment seems to be the typical tale of two sisters, one who rebelled against her family and married a poor immigrant while the other was left with the decaying family business. We soon learn that because of some terrible event she is desperate for affection,

  2. What impact does coming to Eyam and the events of the play that follow, ...

    From the start you can see that Catherine loves the villagers right at the beginning, no matter how they treat her. Mompesson is weary of loving the people, and doesn't love them right until the end of the play, but he still thinks he doesn't.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work