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Which characters do you think Tennessee Williams feels closest to in his play? Do his feelings coincide with yours?

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Introduction

Which characters do you think Tennessee Williams feels closest to in his play? Do his feelings coincide with yours? Elia Kazan once said of Tennessee Williams that 'Everything in his life is in his plays, and everything in his plays is in his life.' This statement could not possibly be more correct as every main character in 'A Street Car Named Desire' whether it is their situation, physical description or personality traits can be linked to somebody who had played a role in Williams' life. Firstly, the relationship between Stella and Stanley reflects that of Williams' own parents. His family life was wracked with violent arguments and a tense atmosphere, which is clearly displayed in the play by Mr and Mrs Kowalski. Stella's attitude towards her marriage can be compared to that of Williams' own mother Edwina. Stella says of Stanley's violent behaviour that 'people have got to tolerate each other's habits', I feel that Williams depicted his own mother when ...read more.

Middle

Stella dotes on her sister and I think Williams felt the same way for his sister Rose. Blanche is the main character in the play but it can be difficult to define how Williams would feel close to her. I think however the issue of sexuality is what his empathy with Blanche is constructed of. Blanche is promiscuous and gives away her love freely but all of this is because of past rejection and heartache. Blanche was married when she was very young but she caught her husband in bed with another man and at the time when this was written, homosexuality was looked upon as disgusting, abnormal and considered a sin. Williams was a homosexual and perhaps this situation was his way of adding his personal feelings and issues that had affected him into Blanche's persona. After consideration however, I actually feel that Williams feels closest to Stanley. ...read more.

Conclusion

It is clear that Williams was never expecting a happy ending both in the play and his life. My personal feelings are actually very different. Although I can understand why Williams would feel close to Stanley I have no empathy for the character myself. The person I feel closest to in the play is actually Mitch. I would like to think Mitch could be defined as the 'hero' of the play; one of Blanche's first observations of Mitch is that 'he seems different from the others'. Mitch was Blanche's ticket to happiness and if it weren't for Stanley all of this could have been possible. I think the reason why I feel so close to Mitch is because of his touching behaviour in Scene eleven. When he realises what is happening to Blanche he threatens to kill Stanley for what he has done but his emotions and love for Blanche overcome him and he 'collapses at the table sobbing.' Stanley may be the 'king' but Mitch is a human being at least. Harriet Walker ...read more.

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