A Streetcar Named Desire: Contextualising

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A Streetcar Named Desire: Contextualising

Tennessee Williams uses ‘A Streetcar Named Desire’ to relate to his own personal life, echoes of his own life are present in the plot and sub-plot of the play. The play is set during the era in which it was written therefore it must have been easy for Williams to relate characters to real life people. Also because this play is meant to be as real to life as possible within the confines of the story means that everyone who goes to watch the play will be able to relate to the characters depicted in some way or other. This would attract the audience because they would have something in common and would be interested to see how they would react and be able to comprehend their actions and what they are experiencing. At the time of writing the play the Second World War had recently ended, this had affected almost everybody in the speaking world and everybody could relate to it, at this time there was a lot of concern for family and friends as they realised how easy it is to lose your loved ones, this may be the reason the Williams past and family are evident in the play and other works of his during the time.

The time at which the play was written was very successful for Williams’ career, he had won many awards for his work and he had received a large number of good reviews for his works at the time. This may explain Williams new found confidence and how he is now comfortable revealing some of his past in the play. This is a very brave thing to do as it is obvious that Williams is still uncomfortable about these issues yet he still feels comfortable revealing them on such a large scale.

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A parallel to Williams’s life is the relationship between Stella and Blanche, this links to Williams and his sister Rose, this relationship between Williams and his sister was broken when Williams moved away from home, this proved a big problem as they went from spending all their time together to none at all, this had the greatest effect on Rose as she became mentally unstable, so much so that she had to be committed to a mental hospital. This parallels to Blanche and Stella, Stella moves away to get on with her life and Blanche stays at home, she ...

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