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A Street Car Named Desire

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Widely considered a landmark play, A Streetcar Named Desire deals with a culture clash between two characters, Blanche DuBois, a relic of the Old South, and Stanley Kowalski, a rising member of the industrial, urban working class.


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Widely considered a landmark play, A Streetcar Named Desire deals with a culture clash between two characters, Blanche DuBois, a relic of the Old South, and Stanley Kowalski, a rising member of the industrial, urban working class.

30 review for A Street Car Named Desire

  1. 5 out of 5

    Brina

    It is the steamy summer in New Orleans in the late 1940s. Old war buddies have gone to their weekly bowling league after work. Meanwhile, young brides pass the time in their two flat apartment while waiting for their husbands to return. It is amidst this backdrop that begins Tennessee Williams' classic play, A Streetcar Named Desire, which still stands the test of time today and became a classic film featuring Marlon Brando and Jessica Tandy. This steamy play ran the gamut of human emotions, and It is the steamy summer in New Orleans in the late 1940s. Old war buddies have gone to their weekly bowling league after work. Meanwhile, young brides pass the time in their two flat apartment while waiting for their husbands to return. It is amidst this backdrop that begins Tennessee Williams' classic play, A Streetcar Named Desire, which still stands the test of time today and became a classic film featuring Marlon Brando and Jessica Tandy. This steamy play ran the gamut of human emotions, and for this I rate it 4 stars. Tennessee Williams introduced the world to characters who have become archetypes for the post-war 1940s. Stella Kowalski, a young bride expecting her first child, who is very much in love with her husband and submits to his every want and need. Her husband, Stanley Kowalski, a war veteran working in a supply company to provide for his wife, and still feeling the need to gather with the men bowling or playing poker after work. Harold Mitchell "Mitch" the bachelor son who looks after his sickly mother. And, of course, the sultry Blanche DuBois, Stella's sister of an undetermined age, the independent, modern woman, who also has a myriad of problems. Blanche DuBois, fresh off of another failure, has taken a streetcar named Desire to spend the summer with Stella and Stanley Kowalski in their one bedroom apartment. Heightened sexually whereas Stella is submissive, there is obvious tension between Blanche and Stanley from the beginning, with Stella acting as a go between. Not only is there tension, Stanley immediately sees beyond Blanche's gaudy clothes and jewelry and sets out to investigate her past. With only a sheet separating their living arrangements in a sweltering summer, the tension continues to escalate throughout the play. As Stanley discovers layer upon layer of Blanche's past, Stella is forced to choose between her dominate husband and sister. While very much in love with her husband, as she points out, she still feels a loyalty to her sister and to her past. She is appalled when her husband reveals that Blanche compromised her role as high school English teacher to engage in inappropriate relationships with her students. If this play had taken place thirty years later, I can believe that Stella would have done some digging of her own to clear Blanche's name. Yet, it is clear that Stella's loyalties lie with her husband, and that what makes the denouement of the play all the more shocking for me, as I am sure it did for many others as well. Tennessee Williams went on to have a hall of fame career as a playwright, including the classics Cat on a Hot Tin Roof and The Glass Menagerie, which have been performed hundreds if not thousands of times over the years. He also was ahead of his time in Desire by discussing social issues such as homosexual relationships, domestic violence and a woman's monetary independence from her husband. While not my absolute favorite play, A Streetcar Named Desire introduced classic characters, and I look forward to seeing them portrayed on film.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Lyn

    “He is of medium height, about five feet eight or nine, and strongly,compactly built. Animal joy in his being is implicit in all his movements and attitudes. Since earliest manhood the center of his life has been pleasure with women, the giving and taking of it, not with weak indulgence, dependency, but with the power and pride of a richly feathered malebird among hens. Branching out from this complete and satisfying center are all the auxiliary channels of his life, such as his heartiness with “He is of medium height, about five feet eight or nine, and strongly,
compactly built. Animal joy in his being is implicit in all his movements and attitudes. Since 
earliest manhood the center of his life has been pleasure with women, the giving and taking of it,
 not with weak indulgence, dependency, but with the power and pride of a richly feathered male
bird among hens. Branching out from this complete and satisfying center are all the auxiliary 
channels of his life, such as his heartiness with men, his appreciation of rough humor, his love of 
good drink and food and games, his car, his radio, everything that is his, that bears his emblem of 
the gaudy seed-bearer. He sizes women up at a glance, with sexual classifications, crude images 
flashing into his mind and determining the way he smiles at them.” Stanley Kowalski is the male equivalent of Faulkner’s Dewey Dell who proclaims “I feel like a wet seed wild in the hot blind earth”. Here is raw, primal, lustful sexuality that pulses and seduces a reader (or audience). “Stell-lahhhhh!’” The poker scene was made famous by Brando’s performance and Kazan’s brilliant direction, but before the 1951 award-winning film was Tennessee Williams’ masterful scene of primitive love and attraction. “I’ve always depended on the kindness of strangers” Blanche DuBois is an archetypal feminine tragic figure on the literary scale with Hemingway’s Lady Brett. But whereas Brett is the domineering, tyrannical alpha female, Blanche’s contribution to our dramatic culture is of the damaged, broken woman, heir to an inheritance that is literally and metaphorically lost. Tennessee Williams New Orleans play, with the “blue piano” and polka music playing in the background is one our most powerful dramas. A must read, but like all plays, it must also be seen.

  3. 5 out of 5

    emma

    Whoa. I did not consume this play as I was intended to. I mean, honestly, you're not supposed to read a play. Tell that to any high school English teacher ever, but still. Tennessee Williams didn't write this like "Hopefully in sixty years a girl will read this alone in her room in one sitting so she can fulfill her goal of reading a classic every month." That's not his ideal. That being said. THIS MADE ME FEEL SO MUCH. A play is supposed to be acted, obviously. Reading it leads to a less emotional Whoa. I did not consume this play as I was intended to. I mean, honestly, you're not supposed to read a play. Tell that to any high school English teacher ever, but still. Tennessee Williams didn't write this like "Hopefully in sixty years a girl will read this alone in her room in one sitting so she can fulfill her goal of reading a classic every month." That's not his ideal. That being said. THIS MADE ME FEEL SO MUCH. A play is supposed to be acted, obviously. Reading it leads to a less emotional rendering, with less full characters, in an imagined version of what is supposed to be a concrete setting. It's a lesser experience - like reading a screenplay. (Cough cough, f*ck you JK Rowling, cough.) And still this was incredible! Blanche and Stella and Mitch were heart-rending. There's so much tension here, and the revelations and the moments of climax and action are just unreal. I don't even know what to say beyond whoa. Guess I should've stopped this review after the first word. Bottom line: FANTASTIC FANTASTIC FANTASTIC. This reading-a-classic-a-month thing is the best thing I'm doing this year.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Carol

    It's the late 1940's and I could visualize the setting of the New Orleans French Quarter (love it) and hear the jazzy blues music playing thru the window as Tennessee Williams brings to life the characters of a very well-built Stanley, his better-half Stella, and her delusional, whiskey-drinking southern belle of a sister Blanche who is in town for an "extended" visit.With two women and one hot-tempered, suspicious man in a dinky one bedroom flat, trouble starts brewing at the onset and never le It's the late 1940's and I could visualize the setting of the New Orleans French Quarter (love it) and hear the jazzy blues music playing thru the window as Tennessee Williams brings to life the characters of a very well-built Stanley, his better-half Stella, and her delusional, whiskey-drinking southern belle of a sister Blanche who is in town for an "extended" visit.With two women and one hot-tempered, suspicious man in a dinky one bedroom flat, trouble starts brewing at the onset and never lets up until the ill-fated end. "Whoever you are.......I have always counted on the kindness of strangers." As a first time read for me, the story behind A STREETCAR NAMED DESIRE was a complete surprise as were the multitude of controversial subject matters often understated in presentation throughout the play, but still.......A powerful and emotional drama. Loved it! (need to get my hands on a copy of the film version with Brando and Leigh.....fast)

  5. 5 out of 5

    Ana

    'Stella!!!' lol I'm finally reading this gorgeous book.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Elise (TheBookishActress)

    Okay, first of all, may I just say: you should see the movie before you read the book. The thing about this play is that it absolutely relies on tension. And that tension is absolutely there in a quality rendition of this show. But it is not conveyed on page. Likewise, most of Blanche’s character is in her nuance, in the subtext of each scene where she acts nervous and worried and in how she is framed and in her fear and turmoil. In a character like this, a character full of ambiguity and hurt Okay, first of all, may I just say: you should see the movie before you read the book. The thing about this play is that it absolutely relies on tension. And that tension is absolutely there in a quality rendition of this show. But it is not conveyed on page. Likewise, most of Blanche’s character is in her nuance, in the subtext of each scene where she acts nervous and worried and in how she is framed and in her fear and turmoil. In a character like this, a character full of ambiguity and hurt and angst, how could an on-page rendition be so sympathetic? How could she gain your sympathies despite her flaws? The answer is that she doesn’t. Until you see the movie and she breaks your fucking heart. Honestly, I think there is a lot to be said about this play and its connection to the downfall of Southern white life [wow, we have read about that a lot in AP Lit this year]. There is also a lot to be said about its occasionally-weird gay subtext - there’s some explicit text that the movie cuts because homophobia, but also the fact that this is essentially a love triangle between a woman’s husband and her sister? Which is something the movie plays up, um, kind of a lot. [There’s a scene framing the two sisters as Hollywood lovers and it is weird.] Also, I’d like to point you all to the comment underneath this status stating that Stanley is a caricature of a straight man and Tenesee Williams just doesn’t understand straight men, because holy shit, that is the funniest thing I have ever read. But honestly, I think explaining the subtext wouldn’t be the best decision either for spoiler purposes [a lot of the thematic stuff is pretty easy to understand] or for my mental health [I am running off far too little sleep and I don’t think this review is coherent, probably.] What I will say is that you should see the movie, and then read the play and compare the two, and that I really liked this. It made no impact on me when I read it, but it's worth the watch.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Candi

    4.5 stars Tragic, raw, and suffused with striking imagery and symbolism, this play is a must-read and now one that I must also see. Williams does a tremendous job of evoking the atmosphere of New Orleans during the 1940's – the music, the heat, the people. The prose is lyrical and truly astonishing at times. I felt as if I were a participant in each and every scene. "The sky that shows around the dim white building is a peculiarly tender blue, almost a turquoise, which invests the scene with a kin 4.5 stars Tragic, raw, and suffused with striking imagery and symbolism, this play is a must-read and now one that I must also see. Williams does a tremendous job of evoking the atmosphere of New Orleans during the 1940's – the music, the heat, the people. The prose is lyrical and truly astonishing at times. I felt as if I were a participant in each and every scene. "The sky that shows around the dim white building is a peculiarly tender blue, almost a turquoise, which invests the scene with a kind of lyricism and gracefully attenuates the atmosphere of decay. You can almost feel the warm breath of the brown river beyond the river warehouses with their faint redolences of bananas and coffee." The vibrant and luckless Blanche DuBois arrives on a streetcar named "Desire" to inhabit the cramped and close quarters of her sister Stella and her husband, Stanley Kowalski. Blanche's duplicitous nature makes for an intriguing character study. The quiet and reserved Stella is the complete opposite of her sister. She shares a passionate relationship with Stanley who is perfectly characterized by Williams: "Animal joy in his being is implicit in all his movements and attitudes. Since earliest manhood the center of his life has been pleasure with women, the giving and taking of it, not with weak indulgence, dependently, but with the power and pride of a richly feathered male bird among hens." The atmosphere immediately turns stifling and the tension quickly escalates as the three lives intersect and collide. Unfamiliar with this play, I was surprised at the heavy themes, in particular those of domestic violence and mental illness. This play felt very real and human, extremely powerful and ultimately quite heartbreaking.

  8. 5 out of 5

    David

    There's a sort of invisible thread from Madame Bovary to A Streetcar Named Desire, which in its route gets tied up in a hot whorehouse and wraps vainly around the cosmetics section of a pharmacy in the Southern United States before knotting at its terminus in New Orleans. I find it almost criminal how often people mistake Blanche duBois' whimsy for female frailty, for I think she is an almost unnaturally strong character; far, far moreso than her timid sister Stella. Perhaps it is because her fo There's a sort of invisible thread from Madame Bovary to A Streetcar Named Desire, which in its route gets tied up in a hot whorehouse and wraps vainly around the cosmetics section of a pharmacy in the Southern United States before knotting at its terminus in New Orleans. I find it almost criminal how often people mistake Blanche duBois' whimsy for female frailty, for I think she is an almost unnaturally strong character; far, far moreso than her timid sister Stella. Perhaps it is because her foil, and diametric opposite, Stanley is so much so the iron casting of masculine strength and violence, that make Blanche seem to the reader/viewer so relatively weak. But the play is dominated by the very different strengths of these enormous characters: Stanley's violent force and Blanche's imaginative power. Blanche, like her French-bourgeois predecessor, Emma Bovary, has an old fashioned ideal of romance which she cannot reconcile with her amorous experiences. Unlike Emma, Blanche has a much more sordid history, and as a result has become the battleground between her vain illusions and her knowing disillusionment. Having fallen in love with a gay boy in her youth, who subsequently died, she sought love in the many men of the local army camp, living a prostitute's kind of life, and even had an affair with a young male student, until she lost her family estate, Belle Reve (presumably from "belle rêve," french for "beautiful dream" - and appropriately a common name for sanitariums, along with belle vue) which she lost to debtors. Blanche's world: her home, her job, her love (or search therefor), everything, she loses, and flees her soiled reputation to live with her sister Stella and her husband Stanley Kowalski. She has a passionate imagination, which is her last remaining crutch of her fragile sanity: “I don't want realism. I want magic! Yes, yes, magic! I try to give that to people. I misrepresent things to them. I don't tell the truth, I tell what ought to be the truth. And it that's sinful, then let me be damned for it!” Her desperation for romance, for magic, in her life is the only avenue remaining for her escape. That's what Streetcar Names Desire is about: escape. Escape from the shameful past, drinking to escape from the dully painful present, and escape from the violent future. Blanche eventually retreats fully into her own self-delusions of romantic escape when her past creeps unexpectedly into the present. The story of Stella and Stanley is a time-creep of the opposite orientation: Stella is made aware of the dangers and disturbances of a future with Stanley by the mistreatment of her sister. Stella sheds her luxurious tears at the the curtain close as a rueful acknowledgement of the tension between reality and illusion. While she cannot fully believe Blanche's story, she cannot bring herself to fully deny it either. Her vision of Stanley, of her sister, and of her life spread out ahead of her are forever changed by what has transpired. Though she stays with Stanley, her relationship with him is tainted with something of mistrust and fear. Illusion in the play, the main funhouse mirror, is the illusion of appearance. Everything has a surface and an interior, and there is a struggle, a contradiction, between the veneer of appearance and the truth of substance. Blanche becomes obsessed with her appearance, rather than reconciling herself with the maelstrom of emotion and fear which boils beneath the surface, she suffocates her own Self by the feint play of her made-up appearance. She has an imagination which approaches prolepsis in its improvisational fervor. She always has a lie, a fraud, a gloss-over for the truth which is black inside of her. She is fearful of the light, which not only shows her aging appearance, signs of aging she she cannot cover-up, but is also symbolic for the truths which are rising like slag to the surface, revealing the cold worn metal beneath. What she cannot escape is that the world does not have the magic which she seeks, the most powerful force around her is truth, and it is truth which she feels she needs to escape. The tension between truth and "magic" eventually destroys her psyche. For Stanley, escape, illusion, is obtained through vice: drinking, gambling, domestic abuse and violence. His fears of incompetence and undeserving are evaded through his violent actions, which both evade questioning yet also show his hand. He is mirrored man to Blanche, and she the revealing pier-glass to him. Because they are so opposed, they reveal the truths in each other's characters. Stanley's violence is incompatible with Blanche's romantic visions of the world, particularly her vision of men. In Stanley she seems a savage character, almost like the stock ruffian of a Spanish romance, but one which is violent even to her, which is violent in its uncovering of her secrets: one which is deliberately cruel. This deliberate cruelty on the part of Stanley is something which Blanche finds "the only thing not forgivable" and the only thing which has the true power to shatter her war-worn illusions. For Stanley, Blanche represents the world which shares his wife, but which he fears has a stronger, atavistic claim on her. He can never offer Stella money or blissful security, he can never offer her culture. Blanche is the very manifestation of these ideals, and her romantic vision of the world is alluring to all around her, her imaginative power is a danger to Stanley's marriage, because it is a reminded to him and to Stella of the kind of life which they can never have with each other. "They told me to take a street-car named Desire, and transfer to one called Cemeteries, and ride six blocks and get off at—Elysian Fields!" Desire and death: the only ways to reach paradise!

  9. 5 out of 5

    Alex ✰ Comets and Comments ✰

    “They told me to take a streetcar named Desire and then transfer to one called Cemeteries and ride six blocks and get off at - Elysian Fields” There is a certain high you feel when you read a classic. It's not one that can be repeatable or interchangeable. It attaches on to you and if it's good enough. It might never leave your system. Enter, our setting: New Orleans in the late 1940s, post second world war and the American Dream is thick in the atmosphere. Jazz and sex and booze and gambling “They told me to take a streetcar named Desire and then transfer to one called Cemeteries and ride six blocks and get off at - Elysian Fields” There is a certain high you feel when you read a classic. It's not one that can be repeatable or interchangeable. It attaches on to you and if it's good enough. It might never leave your system. Enter, our setting: New Orleans in the late 1940s, post second world war and the American Dream is thick in the atmosphere. Jazz and sex and booze and gambling run wild on the streets. Enter, our characters: Stanley Kowalski, Stella and Blanche DuBois. All three damaged and broken. All three deliciously raptured in our plot. Enter, our Story: Their worlds are about to take a 360 degree turn when emotion, the summer heat, lust, manipulation, cleverness but mostly desire come alive and off the pages written by Tennessee Williams. _______________ Touch Anyone who picks up A Streetcar Named Desire knows they are going to be in for a story beyond the story. The writing screams hidden metaphors, and imagery that makes you want to dance with Blanche, play poker with Stanley, cry with Stella and be apart of the gang under New Orleans moon. The story was palpable. It felt like I could touch the characters hearts and minds and it would be okay because they would let me, because Tennessee crafted the story in a way that those who are patient and would allow the characters to touch your hearts... It could work the other way around too. Smell There's a certain warmth you have when you come down to your moms cooking or it's Saturday morning and you can smell breakfast downstairs. The atmosphere that surrounded me throughout reading this script was electric, it smelt like warm bread and then changed to whiskey-filled game nights. There was never a still moment in the world we step foot in. Taste There are so many different types of desire and lust. I could taste all of them in this play. It was as if each had a distinct flavour and every-time a conflict occurred in the plotline, I felt it. I think the manner that Williams approached many different aspects and issues in this book was so strong and relative to the time that this play was published in. This was a time when being in the LGBT community was considered a crime that could be punished and a psychological disease that could be treated. This was a time when being a 'southern belle' was the only way to be accepted as a woman. This was a time when domestic abuse was considered normal and just part of the marriage. I could go on and on and list the different themes that this story approached, but I'm just going say that there was not a single tasteless moment in this play. It may have been bitter, or sweet or even sour. But never tasteless. Hear New Orleans in the 1940's and this novel both have the same tune that plays back. The Blue Piano, the jazz, the love, the instability, the desire. It was a melody that played back and played loud through and through. Their was a powerful voltage that rang through the soundtrack, and it was like every-time you get close you get an electric shock that makes you alive inside and even though you know it's bad to like it. You want more. Sound like a high yet? See When you think of desire, what comes inside your head?

  10. 4 out of 5

    Ahmad Sharabiani

    A Streetcar Named Desire, Tennessee Williams A Streetcar Named Desire is a 1947 play written by American playwright Tennessee Williams that received the Pulitzer Prize for Drama in 1948. The play opened on Broadway on December 3, 1947, and closed on December 17, 1949, in the Ethel Barrymore Theatre. The Broadway production was directed by Elia Kazan and starred Jessica Tandy, Marlon Brando, Karl Malden, and Kim Hunter. The London production opened in 1949 with Bonar Colleano, Vivien Leigh, and Re A Streetcar Named Desire, Tennessee Williams A Streetcar Named Desire is a 1947 play written by American playwright Tennessee Williams that received the Pulitzer Prize for Drama in 1948. The play opened on Broadway on December 3, 1947, and closed on December 17, 1949, in the Ethel Barrymore Theatre. The Broadway production was directed by Elia Kazan and starred Jessica Tandy, Marlon Brando, Karl Malden, and Kim Hunter. The London production opened in 1949 with Bonar Colleano, Vivien Leigh, and Renee Asherson and was directed by Laurence Olivier. The drama A Streetcar Named Desire is often regarded as among the finest plays of the 20th century, and is considered by many to be Williams' greatest. After the loss of her family home, Belle Reve, to creditors, Blanche DuBois travels from the small town of Laurel, Mississippi, to the New Orleans French Quarter to live with her younger, married sister, Stella, and brother-in-law, Stanley Kowalski. Blanche is in her thirties and, with no money, she has nowhere else to go. Blanche tells Stella that she has taken a leave of absence from her English-teaching position because of her nerves (which is later revealed to be a lie). Blanche laments the shabbiness of her sister’s two-room flat. She finds Stanley loud and rough, eventually referring to him as "common". Stanley, in return, does not care for Blanche's manners and dislikes her presence. ... تاریخ نخستین خوانش: ماه نوامبر سال 2003 میلادی عنوان: اتوبوسی به نام هوس؛ نویسنده: تنسی ویلیامز؛ مترجم: مرجان بخت مینو؛ تهران، مینو، 1381؛ در 159 ص؛ شابک: 9649056386؛ از این کتاب الیا کازان فیلمی با بازی ویوین لی و مارلون براندو ساخته است که در سال 1951 میلادی به نمایش درآمده؛ بلانش دی بویس (ویوین لی) دردسرهایی داشته، او پس از اخراج از مدرسه‌ ای که در آن تدریس میکرده، برای دیدار خواهرش استلا (کیم هانتر) و شوهر خواهرش استنلی کووالسکی (مارلون براندو) می‌رود. استنلی که یک قمارباز است و از بدو ورود بلانش سر ناسازگاری با وی میگذارد و از طریق یکی از دوستانش از گذشتهٔ بلانش باخبر می‌شود و ...؛ نقش‌ها: مارلون براندو در نقش استنلی کووالسکی؛ ویوین لی در نقش بلانش دی بویس؛ کیم هانتر در نقش استلا کووالسکی؛ کارل مالدن در نقش هارولد میشل؛ رودی باند در نقش استیو هابل؛ نیک دنیس در نقش پابلو گونزالس ا. شربیانی

  11. 4 out of 5

    Bookdragon Sean

    A mental breakdown is a gradual process; it is something that happens slowly over a substantial period of time. With this play it was like a smack in the mouth; it came suddenly and without any form of real warning. And I find that a little odd. Sure, something can trigger us off though we don’t necessarily go from perfectly calm and collective to meltdown mode in an instant. Blanche is clearly delusional. She has convinced herself of a life that doesn’t really exist. This is her body armour, a A mental breakdown is a gradual process; it is something that happens slowly over a substantial period of time. With this play it was like a smack in the mouth; it came suddenly and without any form of real warning. And I find that a little odd. Sure, something can trigger us off though we don’t necessarily go from perfectly calm and collective to meltdown mode in an instant. Blanche is clearly delusional. She has convinced herself of a life that doesn’t really exist. This is her body armour, a shell she uses to protect herself from what is actually happening in her life. She pretends to be a member of a higher class in which her life is perfectly fine, but it’s not really. Nobody else is aware of this. Her persona convinces most and keeps the rest away. In this she’s not remotely insane or unhinged; she’s just damaged and on her guard. Life has got her down. So at the end of the play, when she supposedly gets raped, she loses it. The sexual chemistry was there from the very first scene in which she met Stanley. She was drawn to his animalism and domineering masculinity; she clearly desired him even if she would never directly admit it to herself or others. So when he eventually makes a move on her, she doesn’t put up any convincing resistance; she lets it happen: she almost wants it to happen. And I find it difficult to conclude that it is rape. It happens off stage and we only know of the aftermath. The crime is implied, though it isn’t directly explicit. “We've had this date with each other from the beginning.” I may be arguing against the tide, though if you consider the history of Blanche the rape can be fairly doubted. She has a way of weeding her way out of situations. She’s escaped her first marriage because her husband killed himself. This, again, seems doubtful. Blanche relays her tale, but from her side of things (the only one that is available.) Apparently, her husband killed himself off the basis of one conversation which confronted his homosexuality. This doesn’t seem real. She walked in on him having sex with another man. Nothing happens. Time goes by. She brings the subject up later on, and then BAMM! he kills himself. I find the whole situation doubtful. We only have Blanche’s take on things, and I do think it’s far from the truth. I think the rape can be seen as her escape route out of another situation. I think she lets it happen just so she can have an exit point. Indeed, the perfectly poised and delusional Blanche couldn’t simply walk out of the door; she couldn’t simply accept that her sister doesn’t like her and that she’s a complete manipulator of people and their emotions. No. That’s not Blanche. She has to go out with a bang, so to speak. I think the whole insanity thing was an act or to the point that she has deluded herself into thinking that it’s real. I am, again, arguing against the tide. I can’t find any sources that agree with me. But, I am almost convinced of it. I just can’t accept that she could have been driven to complete madness just like that. Not that I’m undermining the terribleness of rape, but in this situation I don’t think it’s a valid trigger to insanity. It’s an interesting play, and it made me think, though I’m not certain that the ending everybody thinks happened did happen.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Karlyflower *The Vampire Ninja, Luminescent Monster & Wendigo Nerd Goddess of Canada (according to The Hulk)*

    PopSugar Challenge 2015 SPILLOVER (because I am a challenge failure, oops.) Category: A Play 4 Stars What a deliciously depressive way to commence my 2016 reading year! After hearing and reading about A Streetcar Named Desire (*glares at Losing It*, seriously authors please stop putting massive spoilers for classic works in your books. PLEASE?! I didn’t get spoiled mind because I already knew, but still!)for many a year I have finally sat down and read it. And what I have to say is this: what the PopSugar Challenge 2015 SPILLOVER (because I am a challenge failure, oops.) Category: A Play 4 Stars What a deliciously depressive way to commence my 2016 reading year! After hearing and reading about A Streetcar Named Desire (*glares at Losing It*, seriously authors please stop putting massive spoilers for classic works in your books. PLEASE?! I didn’t get spoiled mind because I already knew, but still!)for many a year I have finally sat down and read it. And what I have to say is this: what the fuck took me so long? This play is a relatively quick read, it took me one lazy January afternoon, but it is packed with a punch that lingers much longer than the story takes to tell. All of the characters within this play are interesting in their own regard, but for the sake of this review I will focus on Blanche. For all intents and purposes Blanche is a lady; well dressed, submissive, diminutive, from a prominent family. However, as the story goes forward there are little moments of reality which slip into that gloss messing up the proper image Blanche portrays. The character transition of Blanche is both fascinating and depressing. This is a harsh little play, and it begs the question: is it better to live in a dark and dreary reality, full of monsters in human flesh or in an imaged perfect world of your own making? “I can't stand a naked light bulb, any more than I can a rude remark or a vulgar action.”

  13. 4 out of 5

    Brian Yahn

    Tennessee Williams writes some brilliant dialogue and distributes it perfectly across an explosive cast of characters. All of it makes for some crazy intense scenes. So while it's natural to imagine this would be an awesome play (which I can't wait to see some day), the experience of reading it isn't, or at least for me it wasn't. Seems like this was clearly written to be performed not read, like most plays are...

  14. 4 out of 5

    Victor *we were on a break!*

    Stell-lahhhhh! I read this back in the late 70s and I can honestly say that, while I enjoyed it, I never fully appreciated it. It was a good, short-read for a school assignment. Nothing special. Then I saw the film adaptation and it quickly became an all-time favorite movie. And Blanche Dubois came to life as one of the most interesting characters I have ever happened upon. Even with her vanity, manipulative behavior, the loss of the ancestral home and her lies, "I don't want realism. I want magic! Stell-lahhhhh! I read this back in the late 70s and I can honestly say that, while I enjoyed it, I never fully appreciated it. It was a good, short-read for a school assignment. Nothing special. Then I saw the film adaptation and it quickly became an all-time favorite movie. And Blanche Dubois came to life as one of the most interesting characters I have ever happened upon. Even with her vanity, manipulative behavior, the loss of the ancestral home and her lies, "I don't want realism. I want magic! Yes, yes, magic! I try to give that to people. I misrepresent things to them. I don't tell truth, I tell what ought to be truth. And if that is sinful, then let me be damned for it! – Don't turn the light on!" I couldn't stay angry at Blanche for long. I found myself pitying this sad and tragic character. I knew it was coming, yet I couldn't help but catch my breath (read: yelp) when she uttered her "kindness of strangers" line. Hayleigh encouraged me to re-read the play and I'm glad she did. I have a newfound appreciation for this piece of work. The only issue I had reading this is that I kept seeing Marlon Brando and Vivien Leigh throughout the book.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Sketchbook

    "You are an ordinary guy and your wife's sister comes to stay with you," began Mary McCarthy in the Partisan Review. "Whenever you want to go to the toilet, there she is in the bathroom, primping or having a bath. My God, you yell, can't a man pee in his own house?" This variation on the mother-in-law joke, which stunned Broadway in 1947 with the heroine's rape, swiftly became an American classic with such lines for the sex act as "getting those colored lights going." On arrival Blanche, played b "You are an ordinary guy and your wife's sister comes to stay with you," began Mary McCarthy in the Partisan Review. "Whenever you want to go to the toilet, there she is in the bathroom, primping or having a bath. My God, you yell, can't a man pee in his own house?" This variation on the mother-in-law joke, which stunned Broadway in 1947 with the heroine's rape, swiftly became an American classic with such lines for the sex act as "getting those colored lights going." On arrival Blanche, played by Jessica Tandy, was the focus of critics. NYTs Brooks Atkinson devoted a graf to the characterization, then added briefly that others were Brando, Karl Malden and Kim Hunter. But, within weeks, Brando dominated theatre talk. My visiting from Los Angeles grandmother, who couldn't get a ticket, did standing room -- and fainted ! A religious person, she found the suicide, incest, insanity, drunkenness, homosexuality and rape too much. Worse, the vulgarians played cards and the heroine used cheap perfume. In his notebooks, director Elia Kazan wrote that it was a poetic tragedy - "the final dissolution of a person of worth." For him, Blanche was a social type who symbolized a dying civilization...the genteel tradition of the old South. Now, she was outdated like the dinosaur. Stanley, "who sucks on a cigar all day because he can't find a teat," must bring her right down to his level, beneath him. So he levels her with his cock. A tragic triangle : Blanche, Stanley, Stella. To finally accept Blanche, Stella would then have to return to the subjugation of the Tradition : childhood, younger sister, the South. Stella must be narcotized to forget the price she's paying for a kind of salvation. She's doomed too. The "Streetcar" comes to the last stop at the end of the line.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Agir(آگِر)

    بلانش: چطور تونستی دیشب برگردی اینجا؟ چرا بایس باهاش خوابیده باشی؟ استلا:اما بالاخره یک چیزهائی هست که در تاریکی بین زن و مرد اتفاق می افته ،بطوری که هرچیز دیگه رو بی اهمیت میکنه بلانش:این که داری میگی هوس وحشی و پستی است.فقط هوس؛ اسم همون اتوبوس پر سروصدائی که مرتبا از این خیابون به اون خیابون میره بعضی کتابها شاهکارند چون با تمام کردن و بستن کتاب ،هنوز در ذهنت ورق میخورند نه اینکه کتاب به سبک سیال ذهن و غیر خطی باشد بلکه در طول کتاب، افکارت دائما در حال تغییر بوده اند بعد خواندن نمایشنامه، فیلمش را بلانش: چطور تونستی دیشب برگردی اینجا؟ چرا بایس باهاش خوابیده باشی؟ استلا:اما بالاخره یک چیزهائی هست که در تاریکی بین زن و مرد اتفاق می افته ،بطوری که هرچیز دیگه رو بی اهمیت میکنه بلانش:این که داری میگی هوس وحشی و پستی است.فقط هوس؛ اسم همون اتوبوس پر سروصدائی که مرتبا از این خیابون به اون خیابون میره بعضی کتابها شاهکارند چون با تمام کردن و بستن کتاب ،هنوز در ذهنت ورق میخورند نه اینکه کتاب به سبک سیال ذهن و غیر خطی باشد بلکه در طول کتاب، افکارت دائما در حال تغییر بوده اند بعد خواندن نمایشنامه، فیلمش را دیدم و دوباره ذهنم درگیر حلاجی شخصیت ها شد ... شخصیت های اصلی داستان:بلانش - استلا(خواهر بلانش)-استانلی(شوهر استلا) و (میچ (عاشق بلانش تنسی ویلیامز ابتدا شخصیت های داستانش را در جَوی آرام نشان می دهد و بعد کم کم چاشنی خشونت و هوس را به آن می افزاید و تمام آنچه در مورد شخصیت ها گمان برده بودی همه کم رنگ می شوند و رنگی دیگر می گیرند از بلانش بدت می اید و بعد طرفش رامی گیری و حتی از بیچارگی اش کم می ماند ...گریه ات بگیرد و باز از استانلی هم همینطور البته گریه برای استانلی را فراموش کنید :) بلانش و استانلی خواه ناخواه باید دشمن هم شوند یکی هنوز از اصالت خویش دم می زند و دیگری به هیچ قانونی که ریشه در گذشته داشته باشد پایبند نیست حتی محرمات این جامعه نابسامان وآشفته از لحاظ اخلاقی را در ناطور دشت و راننده تاکسی هم می بینیم بلانش گذشته ای تلخ دارد و گاه و بیگاه برایش تداعی می شود و رنج می برد.گذشته های تلخ پر از مردان بد، پشت سرش تلنبار شده اند استلا به استانلی میگوید: تو بلانش روموقع دختریش ندیدی.هیچکس، هیچکس به اندازه اون خوش قلب و خوش باور نبود اما آدمهائی مثه تو ازش سوءاستفاده کردن و مجبورش کردن عوض شه بلانش با دیدن مردان نقش بازی می کند تا یکی از آن ها را بفریبد و برای خودش پناهگاهی بیابد.او از روشنایی بیزار است چون صورتش را نمی پوشاند و !! سن واقعی اش را نشان می دهد .هرروز خدا دوش آب داغ می گیرد میچ دیشب بجز یک ماچ چیزی گیرش نیومده.من فقط بهش ماچ دادم.میخام احترام منو نگه داره و مردها چیزی رو که آسان گیر بیاد دوس ندارن.از طرف دیگه زود سرد میشن،بخصوص اگه سن دختره بیشتر از سی سال باشه.اونا خیال میکنن دختری که سنش از سی سال تجاوز کرد باید درشو بذاره و من نمیخام اینطور ! شه.البته میچ نمیدونه-من سن حقیقی خودمو بهش نگفتم شاید در جامعه ای که ظاهر این همه اهمیت را دارد نقش بازی کردن را اجباری نامید و بتوان تبرئه اش کرد،ولی تمسخر کردن میچ، با گفتن جمله زیر به فرانسوی، چیز دیگری می گوید من مادام کاملیا هستم و تو آرماند !می خواهی امشب با من بخوابی؟ نمی فهمی چی میگم ؟ آه، بسی افسوس مادام کاملیا اثر الکساندر دوما(پسر)،داستان زنی بدکاره بود که با عشق خالصانه آرماند، دگرگون میشود.بلانش به زبان فرانسوی -که میچ ان را نمی فهمد-خود را مادام کاملیا می نامند اما در طول داستان با زبان انگلیسی خود را زنی پاک وتنها و شکست خورده عشق نشان میدهد تا میچ را عاشق خود کند یکی از دوستانش استانلی برای خنداندن جمع پوکربازان، جوکی تعریف میکند که : نمایانگر روحیه هوس طلبی این جمع است پیرمرد دهاتی پشت خونش نشسته بود برای جوجه ها دون می پاشید.یکمرتبه صدای قد قد میاد و یک مرغ دون ورچین پیداش میشه،یه خروس هم گذاشته دنبالش اما تا خروس چشمش به پیرمرده می افته و میبینه که دون می پاشه مرغه رو ول میکنه و شروع میکنه به دون ورچیدن.پیرمرده که اینو میبینه میگه << !خدای بزرگ،منو هیچوخ آنقدر گشنه نذار >> استانلی سلطان هوس است و حتی شاید دلسوزی اش برای دوستش "میچ" برای ارضای هوس خود بوده تا رقیب را حذف کند و خود به بلانش دست یابد او خروس است و یک خروس نه از مرغ تعریف می کند و نه با آن لاس میزند و فقط هوسش را در چند لحظه به هر راهی شده فرو می نشاند او به بلانش می گوید: تعارف به زن ها درباره قیافه شون جزو مزخرفاته،من هیچ زنی رو ندیدم که قبل اینکه بهش بگن،خودش ندونه خوشگله یا نه.بعضی هاشون هم زیادی واسه خودشون ارزش قائلن شخصیت سازش پذیر استلا در این غوغا نسبت به بلانش و استانلی زیاد به چشم نمی آید.وی دقیقا شبیه مرغی است که در برابر کتک ها و خیانت ها و مستی های خروس تسلیم می شود و این تسلیم پذیری در جملات اول ریویو که می گوید همه این چیزها در شب و هم آغوشی با استانلی فراموش می شوند کاملا مشهود است صد رحمت به ایونانس (زن همسایه) که با شنیدن خیانت های همسرش حداقل چند ظرفی !!! می شکند اما باز باید این خیانت ها را فراموش کند شاید تنها شخصیت میچ است که می توان دوستش داشت.مردی که از مادر پیر و مریضش مراقبت میکند اما هیچ خبری از پدر و مادر استانلی و دوستان دیگرش نیست.با اینکه میچ میل جنسی زیادی به بلانش دارد و فرصتش هم پیش می آید تجاوز نمی کند

  17. 5 out of 5

    Amr Mohamed

    بصوا يا جماعة مش مهم دلوقتي المسرحية حلوة ولا رأيي فيها ولا الكلام ده .....المصيبة بقي أن مسرحية مشهورة لتنيسي ويليامز وعمل بطولتها مرتين مارلون براندو في فيلم ومسرحية نيجي في مصر هنا يعمل الشخصية ياسر جلال في فيلم الرغبة..لأ كدا كتير اقسم بالله يعني اي حاجة مثّلها مارلون ولا حتي قرأها مينفعش ياسر جلال يتكلم عليها اساسا مش يمثلها ...لما تبقي مسرحية مشهورة ونجيب البطلة نادية الجندي كانت ساعتها لسا راجعه من تل أبيب والحرب وهز عرش مصر مفرهدينها وخدت معاها صاحبتها وحبيبتها الهام شاهين ...هما اصلا جاي بصوا يا جماعة مش مهم دلوقتي المسرحية حلوة ولا رأيي فيها ولا الكلام ده .....المصيبة بقي أن مسرحية مشهورة لتنيسي ويليامز وعمل بطولتها مرتين مارلون براندو في فيلم ومسرحية نيجي في مصر هنا يعمل الشخصية ياسر جلال في فيلم الرغبة..لأ كدا كتير اقسم بالله يعني اي حاجة مثّلها مارلون ولا حتي قرأها مينفعش ياسر جلال يتكلم عليها اساسا مش يمثلها ...لما تبقي مسرحية مشهورة ونجيب البطلة نادية الجندي كانت ساعتها لسا راجعه من تل أبيب والحرب وهز عرش مصر مفرهدينها وخدت معاها صاحبتها وحبيبتها الهام شاهين ...هما اصلا جايين مش عشان يوضحوا فكرة تينيسي وليامز في الرغبة.. .هما شافوا رغبة وياسر جلال بفانلة حمالات فقالوا هييييييييييه يبقي اكيد فيها قلع هدوم واغتصاب وخدوا معاهم عادل الفار اللى هوا بتاع النكت ده وعملوا الفيلم وطبعا انتاج السبكي بسم الله مش شاء الله مميز من يومه. يعني ده لو مسرحية كرتون مش هيبقي الابطال فيها كدا. مش قصة لمصطفي محرم هيا..الرحمة يا جماعة شوية ناقص محمد رمضان واحمد السقا يعملوا فيلم براف هارت عن قصة تحرير مدينة بلبيس نيجي للمسرحية كويسة وفكرتها عجبتني قرأتها من زمان جدا ومعجبتنيش ولكن لما أعدت القرأة نوعا ما كويسة..الرغبة وماذا من الممكن ان تسبب.. بطلة اصبحت مريضة نفسية وحتى اختها ليست طبيعية فهى ضحت بأختها وحياتها فقط لاشباع الرغبة. وزوج مثل الحيوان..المسرحية جيدة ولكن ياسر جلال قفل المسرحية .

  18. 4 out of 5

    Eryn✵

    Read for class... Plays really aren't my thing.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Becky

    I enjoyed the story... It really drew me in, which is saying something considering that I picked it to read on commercial breaks during the Olympics... and I ended up reading instead of watching. I liked this play because the characters seemed like real, flawed people. Granted, Blanche was a little over-the-top sometimes, but I imagine all southern-belle types are a little over-the-top from time to time. Blanche was an easily identifiable character... someone who deeply regrets a thoughtless act I enjoyed the story... It really drew me in, which is saying something considering that I picked it to read on commercial breaks during the Olympics... and I ended up reading instead of watching. I liked this play because the characters seemed like real, flawed people. Granted, Blanche was a little over-the-top sometimes, but I imagine all southern-belle types are a little over-the-top from time to time. Blanche was an easily identifiable character... someone who deeply regrets a thoughtless act in her youth, and seeks forgetfulness, and another chance at happiness, in all the wrong places. In the end, you are left wondering if everything she said was real, considering that she is a self-proclaimed liar, "unless it is important", but who determines importance? I couldn't really identify with either Stella or Stanley as much... I couldn't really accept how someone could choose their abusive husband over their sister, especially given the accusation at the end. Stanley seemed like a husband jealous of his wife's relationship with her sister and determined to thwart their happiness at every turn... But worse than this, he is also careless with his own supposed best friend's feelings despite the fact that his friend seems very happy. These characters are not like-able, but they are human.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Sue

    Such a powerful drama! Williams presents his word-portraits so amazingly. As I noted when I read Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, he also is a master of stage direction. When reading this play, it's possible to "see" the surroundings, hear the music and voices on the street. Stanley, Stella and Blanche come alive on the pages as Blanche drops in at her sister's home creating a simmering stew of growing emotion. The heat of a Southern summer is reflected by all that happens in the two bedroom apartment as s Such a powerful drama! Williams presents his word-portraits so amazingly. As I noted when I read Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, he also is a master of stage direction. When reading this play, it's possible to "see" the surroundings, hear the music and voices on the street. Stanley, Stella and Blanche come alive on the pages as Blanche drops in at her sister's home creating a simmering stew of growing emotion. The heat of a Southern summer is reflected by all that happens in the two bedroom apartment as stories are told and feelings unleashed. Now I must watch the film...just placed on hold at the library. Very highly recommended.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Obsidian

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. I read this play as part of Dead Writers Society Literary Birthday Challenge for March. I am so happy that I selected Williams as one of the authors I wanted to read this month. I think in school I may have possibly read one of the first scenes from this play and that was it. Reading the entire play in one sitting was fantastic. Tennessee Williams doesn't just focus on the characters, he focuses on the music being played in the scenes, how the music changes based on what characters are saying, ho I read this play as part of Dead Writers Society Literary Birthday Challenge for March. I am so happy that I selected Williams as one of the authors I wanted to read this month. I think in school I may have possibly read one of the first scenes from this play and that was it. Reading the entire play in one sitting was fantastic. Tennessee Williams doesn't just focus on the characters, he focuses on the music being played in the scenes, how the music changes based on what characters are saying, how they should look, how set pieces should look, etc. This was like getting a behind the scene notes on how a play is written. FYI there is a discussion of rape in this review so please skip over if you don't want to read about the subject. Following two sisters, Blanche and Stella, we have Stella living in New Orleans married to her husband Stanley. Stella was fairly well off before marrying Stanley, and the two are in a marriage that has a lot of passion but also a lot of anger and fights. Blanche still recovering from the loss of her first husband, has come to visit Stella. It's pretty apparent that things are not what they seem with Blanche and that she is a bit "off" so to speak based on later scenes. Stella and Blanche are total opposites in some ways, but geez oh geez, they have some similarities. For example, both bury their head in the sand when it comes back to facing up to their reality. Blanche still wants to believe she's a Southern belle with beaus scampering after her. Stella wants to believe that passion and the love she has for Stanley is enough though he is at times abusive when he drinks and is definitely verbal abusive to her when he has not drunk. The character of Stanley is crude, hurtful, and smart. I think that is one of the things that you don't realize at first glance. Stanley takes his time, but he ensures that he breaks Blanche down to size. The fact that when he first met her and he realized her opinion of him, his only reaction was to do what he could to make her be a woman, i.e. someone he could control just like Stella. “Some things are not forgiveable. Deliberate cruelty is not forgiveable. It is the most unforgiveable thing in my opinion, and the one thing in which I have never, ever been guilty.”-Blanche discussing Stanley The secondary characters in this play, Mitch (a potential beau for Blanche) and Eunice (upstairs neighbor and friend to Stella) are given solid backgrounds as well. Eunice seems to be just as lost as Stella is regarding how a woman she expect to be treated by her man and or husband. Mitch is a mama's boy who is always going to go through life disappointed that no woman he marries is her. I thought the writing was great and always with just a word or phrase, Williams can depict so much with what is going on with a character. Probably the scene that was the hardest was when we get to the final confrontation between Blanche and Stanley which ends with Stanley raping her was hard. Because as a reader, things are set up enough that I realized that this was where Williams was going to go. "We've had this date with each other since the beginning." I hated that line though, probably because it is implied in Stanley's mind what he's about to do is welcomed by Blanche. And all because he wanted to totally destroy her and make her "see" that her life was a lie. And at that point with the ending of the play and what comes I ended up hating the character of Stella. Because it was cruel and hard to read that poor Blanche who at that point is scared of Stanley and has told her sister what he did can't wrap her head around him still being in the apartment prior to her being carted away. We as readers know that Stella chose her husband and new baby over her sister and ended up not believing her. Or maybe she did believe her, but still chose Stanley over her (which is even worse). The setting of New Orleans I thought was perfect for this play. I could imagine it hot, everyone sweaty, and being able to hear the crowd down below and the music coming up the stairs from the street. I did follow up to see that the film version of A Streetcar Named Desire changed things up regarding the ending. I actually like Williams version better, maybe because it's more cruel and true to life. Though I do like the film version making sure that there was some punishment for Stanley.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Nikos Tsentemeidis

    Κλασικό, από τα καλύτερα θεατρικά. Ο Williams θίγει πολλά κοινωνικά θέματα, προκαλώντας τρομερή εντύπωση στην Αμερική της δεκαετίας '50. Η βία εντός οικογένειας, το πρότυπο του ισχυρού άνδρα, η ταξική προέλευση κτλ είναι μερικά από αυτά. Υπάρχει και μεταφορά στον κινηματογράφο με πρωταγωνιστή τον Marlon Brando. Σίγουρα θα έχει ενδιαφέρον

  23. 4 out of 5

    Maddy

    Maybe I'll change my rating after we study it in class but right now it is a dwindling 2 stars. ----- Update ------ Yep, this definitely got better after studying it properly.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Outis

    Proposito per l'anno prosimo: leggere più teatro. In questo caso ne è valsa veramente la pena.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Connie

    I was even more impressed with A Streetcar Named Desire when I revisited it recently after first reading it about ten years ago. It has a wonderful combination of lyrical language and interesting characters. Blanche DuBois comes to stay at the home of her sister Stella, and her husband Stanley Kowalski in a poor area of New Orleans. Blanche has lost both her job and the family home of Belle Reve. There is a family curse where "our improvident grandfathers and father and uncles and brothers exchan I was even more impressed with A Streetcar Named Desire when I revisited it recently after first reading it about ten years ago. It has a wonderful combination of lyrical language and interesting characters. Blanche DuBois comes to stay at the home of her sister Stella, and her husband Stanley Kowalski in a poor area of New Orleans. Blanche has lost both her job and the family home of Belle Reve. There is a family curse where "our improvident grandfathers and father and uncles and brothers exchanged the land for their epic fornications" and the curse seems to have passed down to Blanche. She is a cultured person living in a fantasy world of lies. She tries to wash away her guilt over the suicide of her husband with long baths, and numbs her mind with alcohol. Living at a time when women were very dependent on men for support, Blanche has come to the end of the road, and will not let men see her in a bright light that will reveal her age as she searches for love. Stanley is a passionate, realistic, common man who enjoys women, bowling, alcohol, and a night of poker with his friends. He is also abusive to Stella when he gets upset. He sees his homelife being destroyed by Blanche, and aims to breaks her by investigating her past. Stella is caught between Blanche and Stanley. She is concerned about her sister's mental state. Blanche compares Stanley to an animal. Blanche says, "Thousands and thousands of years have passed him right by, and there he is--Stanley Kowalski--survivor of the stone age." But Stella was happy with him before Blanche moved in because Stella and Stanley share a great passion. Stella is also pregnant with Stanley's child. As the play moves on, Tennessee Williams does a marvelous job of juxtaposing a fantasy world with reality. The play is violent, sensual, and heartbreaking as it reaches its conclusion. ________________________________________ Several movies have been made from this play. Marlon Brando starred in a famous version of this drama. The recent Woody Allen movie, "Blue Jasmine," is a contemporary story with themes taken from A Streetcar Named Desire. Cate Blanchette is a terrific Jasmine.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Giss Golabetoon

    To write or not to write that's the question! So basically you read the play and your head is swarmed with so many things to say, to write but you don't know if you should or you could. There was a self interview with Tennessee Williams at the end of the book and he was talking about what he wanted to say in this book so now I'm confused because at the same time I as a woman and as a feminist find the women in this book a little, more than a little a lot misrepresented, they are weak, they can't d To write or not to write that's the question! So basically you read the play and your head is swarmed with so many things to say, to write but you don't know if you should or you could. There was a self interview with Tennessee Williams at the end of the book and he was talking about what he wanted to say in this book so now I'm confused because at the same time I as a woman and as a feminist find the women in this book a little, more than a little a lot misrepresented, they are weak, they can't defend themselves, they have no notion of what they're doing where they're going or who they are and they are tricked and misused and abused and mistreated by men especially the ones that are closest to them like their husbands or their brother in laws, so that's why Blanche says I depend on the kindness of strangers. I have a love-hate relationship with this sentence and the whole play but it's a very easy good lovely read and I personally like Tennessee Williams' writing.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Annie

    Don't be fooled by the beginning. This book is about Blanche, pure and simple. We have Stella, who ought to know better and does know better, but doesn't act on that knowledge. Not for herself- she refuses to accept her husband is a violent, worthless cad- and not for her sister Blanche, who she seems to love above all else. Who would rather lock up her sister than believe what her sister said: that Stella's husband raped her. Oh, she knows perfectly well; that's clear enough. But it's just easie Don't be fooled by the beginning. This book is about Blanche, pure and simple. We have Stella, who ought to know better and does know better, but doesn't act on that knowledge. Not for herself- she refuses to accept her husband is a violent, worthless cad- and not for her sister Blanche, who she seems to love above all else. Who would rather lock up her sister than believe what her sister said: that Stella's husband raped her. Oh, she knows perfectly well; that's clear enough. But it's just easier to throw her sister in an asylum than to admit her husband is as horrible as he is. We have Stella's husband Stanley, a worthless piece of debris, a wife-beater and a cheater and a rapist of his sister-in-law. We have Mitch, a plain and simple-minded child of a man. Go0d-hearted, perhaps, but deeply simple and easily influenced. But then we have Blanche. Oh, Blanche, what a heartbreaker. Pitiful and sad, but curiously enough, she's the wisest character in the book by far. Dizzy and silly and absurd, but practical in her own way. More than that, she's insightful: into her own life (she knows perfectly well her whole life's a sham, and her repression of it all is a conscious, aware repression), into her sister's (she knows right away what sort of man Stanley is), and into life in general. So of course, it's Blanche who the world calls "crazy" because she's poetic enough to wish for beautiful things (how appropriate that Stella and Blanche's lost plantation home is called Belle Reve: beautiful dream!) and to try to see beauty and elegance and art in humanity, poetic enough to pretend it's there even when it's not; because she's practical enough to do what she must to survive, like becoming a sex worker; because she's brave enough to tell the truth about what Stanley did to her, even if she knows her sister will pretend it isn't true. Who, in the end, is the crazy one? In the end, which of these characters deny reality most truly? ----------------------------------------- Some Blanche quotes: "The opposite [of death] is desire." "I've always depended on the kindness of strangers." MITCH: "I don't think I've ever seen you in the light ..." BLANCHE: "There is some obscure meaning in this but I fail to catch it." MITCH:"What it means is I've never had a real good look at you, Blanche. Let's turn the light on here. ... So I can take a look at you good and plain!" BLANCHE: "Of course you don't really mean to be insulting!" MITCH: "No, just realistic." BLANCHE: I don't want realism. I want magic! Yes, yes, magic! I try to give that to people. I misrepresent things to them. I don't tell truth, I tell what ought to be truth. And if that is sinful, then let me be damned for it! Don't turn the light on!"

  28. 5 out of 5

    George K.

    Τρίτο κλασικό θεατρικό έργο που διαβάζω φέτος, μετά το "Οικόπεδα με θέα" του Ντέιβιντ Μάμετ και το "Ο θάνατος του εμποράκου" του Άρθουρ Μίλερ, και αυτό με τη σειρά του μου φάνηκε πολύ καλό, ιδιαίτερο, διεισδυτικό και ενδιαφέρον από την αρχή μέχρι το τέλος. Φυσικά, αποτελεί και την πρώτη μου επαφή με το έργο του Τένεσι Γουίλιαμς, του μεγάλου αυτού θεατρικού συγγραφέα. "Ο Στάνλεϋ Κοβάλσκι, ένας άξεστος Πολωνός, δεύτερη γενιά μετανάστης, και η γυναίκα του Στέλλα, που κατάγεται από ξεπεσμένη εύπορη ο Τρίτο κλασικό θεατρικό έργο που διαβάζω φέτος, μετά το "Οικόπεδα με θέα" του Ντέιβιντ Μάμετ και το "Ο θάνατος του εμποράκου" του Άρθουρ Μίλερ, και αυτό με τη σειρά του μου φάνηκε πολύ καλό, ιδιαίτερο, διεισδυτικό και ενδιαφέρον από την αρχή μέχρι το τέλος. Φυσικά, αποτελεί και την πρώτη μου επαφή με το έργο του Τένεσι Γουίλιαμς, του μεγάλου αυτού θεατρικού συγγραφέα. "Ο Στάνλεϋ Κοβάλσκι, ένας άξεστος Πολωνός, δεύτερη γενιά μετανάστης, και η γυναίκα του Στέλλα, που κατάγεται από ξεπεσμένη εύπορη οικογένεια του Νότου, ζουν στα Ηλύσια Πεδία, μια μίζερη παραποτάμια συνοικία της Νένας Ορλεάνης. Η αδελφή της Στέλλας, η Μπλανς Ντυμπουά, μια εύθραυστη, στολισμένη, ξεθωριασμένη καλλονή, καταδέχεται να έρθει και να ζητήσει καταφύγιο στο σπίτι του ζεύγους, όπου αρχίζει να ζει πνίγοντας τα προβλήματά της στο ποτό και μιλώντας συνέχεια για το ένδοξο παρελθόν της οικογένειάς της". Αυτά λέει η περίληψη και δεν χρειάζεται να ξέρει κανείς κάτι παραπάνω πριν ξεκινήσει την ανάγνωση του βιβλίου. Είναι ένα έργο που θίγει αρκετά σοβαρά και σημαντικά κοινωνικά θέματα, όπως η οικογενειακή βία, το πρότυπο του δυναμικού και ισχυρού άντρα, η ταξική θέση και προέλευση κ.α., που σίγουρα θα προκάλεσαν μια κάποια εντύπωση στην Αμερικάνικη κοινωνία εκείνης της εποχής. Εδώ που τα λέμε, ακόμα και τώρα τα θέματα που θίγονται στο έργο αυτό είναι επίκαιρα. Οι διάλογοι είναι πολύ ρεαλιστικοί και ανθρώπινοι, οι χαρακτήρες γεμάτοι πάθη -με τα θετικά και τα αρνητικά τους-, ενώ το όλο σκηνικό απλό αλλά συνάμα λειτουργικό. Γενικά, πρόκειται για ένα θεατρικό έργο που δίκαια έχει τη φήμη που το ακολουθεί και που θεωρείται ένα από τα καλύτερα Αμερικάνικα θεατρικά έργα όλων των εποχών. Τώρα που το βλέπω, και αυτό με τη σειρά του κέρδισε το βραβείο Πούλιτζερ (1948), όπως και τα άλλα δυο θεατρικά που διάβασα μέσα στη χρονιά. Χα, σας ορκίζομαι, δεν επιδίωξα κάτι τέτοιο! Λίαν συντόμως θα δω και την κλασική ομότιτλη ταινία του 1951, σε σκηνοθεσία Elia Kazan.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Alex

    I had some idea, from the hokey friendliness of the name "Tennessee Williams," and the cute titles of his plays - "Streetcar Named Desire"! "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof!" - they sound like musicals - I had an idea that these would be friendly. Pop culture. In the great telephone game of pop culture, what I ended up hearing was Marlon Brando yelling "STELLA!", which sounded pretty goofy to me. That was the wrong impression. This play is dark. I love the mix of realism and poetry here. Stanley is almost I had some idea, from the hokey friendliness of the name "Tennessee Williams," and the cute titles of his plays - "Streetcar Named Desire"! "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof!" - they sound like musicals - I had an idea that these would be friendly. Pop culture. In the great telephone game of pop culture, what I ended up hearing was Marlon Brando yelling "STELLA!", which sounded pretty goofy to me. That was the wrong impression. This play is dark. I love the mix of realism and poetry here. Stanley is almost always realistic - in the style of other 20th-century playwrights, saying things that real people might say. But Blanche is all poetry, Shakespearean. (And she gets the best lines; most of the stuff I quoted below is by her. (The first one is Stella.)) Williams weaves those styles together wonderfully; that's one of his best achievements. Here's me confused about the message: (view spoiler)[I'm not sure what to make of it. I sympathized with Stanley at his first appearance, because he seemed down-to-earth; then I sympathized with Stella, because Stanley was quickly uncovered as a violent man; then with Blanche, who just wants a fresh start; then with Stanley again, because he's really trying to tell the truth. In the end, Stella recedes into the background, an insignificant person - not Williams' fault; his decision - and Blanche emerges as the person you're most able to empathize with, out of a thin stable. So...the upper classes whore themselves out, are traumatized by homosexuals (which Williams was) and then raped by the emerging, grounded lower classes, who are furious at their shallow lies? To be led away in defeat and insanity? Hrmf, that doesn't feel like I've got it right. I'd like to read more of Williams' plays; I think there might be more to it than that. I mean, I think part of his point is clearly that people are too complicated for heroes and villains - but still, everyone has a point, and...I'm not sure I have a handle on his. (hide spoiler)] But I really liked this. I thought it was complicated and nasty and progressive. I got a lot out of this. Here are some of the things I got: Act I scene 4: "There are things that happen between a man and a woman in the dark - that sort of make everything else seem - unimportant." Scene 5: "When people are soft - soft people have got to court the favor of hard ones, Stella. Have got to be seductive - put on soft colors, the color of butterfly wings, and glow - make a little - temporary magic, just in order to pay for - one night's shelter! ... I've run for protection, Stella, from under one leaky roof to another - because it was storm - all storm." "I want to deceive him enough to make him - want me... Blanche, do you want him? I want to rest! I want to breath quietly again! Yes - I want Mitch...very badly!" Scene 6: "I made the discovery - love. All at once and much,much too completely. It was like you suddenly turned a blinding light on something that had always been half in shadow...but I was unlucky." Holy shit! That next passage is unexpected. Scene 9: "I'll tell you what I want. Magic! Yes, yes, magic! I try to give that to people. I misrepresent things to them. I don't tell truth, I tell what ought to be truth. And if that is sinful, then let me be damned for it! - Don't turn the light on!"

  30. 5 out of 5

    Kira Simion

    3.5 stars. In my head this played like a soap opera so that was interesting. But what themes there were that I could see for some parts: like purity, relationships, and the possibility that everyone is awful in some ways didn't really work for me. In my own opinion, yes, we are all awful in that we are not pure, but that doesn't make us automatically cheaters, alcoholics, or suicide helpers. We have some flaws, but most don't make us evil. Many of us are not like Blanche, a tragedy waiting to happen 3.5 stars. In my head this played like a soap opera so that was interesting. But what themes there were that I could see for some parts: like purity, relationships, and the possibility that everyone is awful in some ways didn't really work for me. In my own opinion, yes, we are all awful in that we are not pure, but that doesn't make us automatically cheaters, alcoholics, or suicide helpers. We have some flaws, but most don't make us evil. Many of us are not like Blanche, a tragedy waiting to happen. EDIT: 3-21-17 I have a small note to add. I believe maybe I took some of my anger out on this story. It's not the story's fault so I wish to fix this. I liked the story because: 1. It flowed smoothly. 2. I never really liked stage directions in books, but it worked in this book. 3. Everything seemed to have a meaning. I didn't look for some, but some I didn't have to. 4. I haven't seen the play, but I might see it after this if it's showing later. Now, things I believed could have been better (opinions ahead): 1. I understand I said Blanche was a tragedy, and I will stand by that, but I can see why she acts the way she does. However, I didn't feel like she wanted to change. She was too stuck on the past (and I saw the reason) and, yes, I do feel sorry for her, but I am unable to try to feel for one who cannot try to overcome something. I need the fight. I need to see that s(he), whoever it is, will FIGHT when something goes wrong. Or fight for something they WANT. I want to see their strength along with their weaknesses. That is why I didn't like Blanche, or really any other character. Her sister didn't even stand up for her. So I feel bad for her, but that's it.

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