"A Street Car Named Desire", by Tennessee Williams - Is Blanche guilty of her own misfortunes?

Essay by juana989 October 2007

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All over the play, Williams, shows us a succession of unfortunate events in Blanche´s life. Many may think she is a total victim. In contrast, it can be thought that the events are because of her entire fault.

To begin with, the fact that she lost Bell Reeve can be because of her fault and because she had not take care of her property. However, it is true to say that in some way this was a consequence of the chauvinist society in which women were not able to progress without men and they were not prepared or educated to be in charge of business. This can be seen in the way Blanche was looking desperately for a man instead of a job because she is nothing without one. For example, in scene four (p.159 Penguin) Blanche says to her sister "you know I went to Miami during the Christmas holidays? ...

I took the trip as an investment, thinking I would meet someone with a million dollars"There have been a lot of misfortunes in Blanche´s life but, focusing on one of the most important and painful misfortunes that occurred to her, the rape, it must be admitted that she was not at all guilty. The manner in which the author depicts the situation lets us see that she was a victim of Stanley´s force and violence. In scene ten the rape is described (p.215 Penguin) "He picks up her inert figure and carries her to bed" and we can see how she managed to stop him "Stay back! Don´t you come towards me another step or I´ll … she smashes a bottle on the table and faces him…" Stanley knew that she was not very sane and although she had flirt with him, as she did with all...