Mitch is upset that Blanche lies to him and does not tell him about her affairs at the Hotel Flamingo. Mitch finds out from Stanley: ” Lies, Lies, inside and out, all lies. ” Blanche is not used to being rejected; her reaction to this is that the little self-worth she has left was smashed. She could not take any more. Mitch cares for his mother; he has the nickname ‘titsucker’ for being loyal to his mother. We are under the impression that he does not like to be lied to because he believes in being loyal. Throughout the play, Blanche is being reminded of her dead husband, because of the polka music.
In the beginning of the play polka music can be heard: ” [The noise of the polka music rises up, faint in the distance. ] The boy, the boy died….. [Her head falls on her arms]” The music reminds Blanche of her sad past. The music plagues Blanche throughout the play, it is an incessant reminder of her dead husband. At the end of the play it takes over from reality. There are quite a few factors that lead to Blanche’s downfall, I believe that many of them are owing to Blanche’s sad past, and the death of her father, mother and husband. Not to be forgotten the loss of Belle Reve.
This was named “Beautiful dream”; Blanches tries to escape from her nightmare and create a new beautiful dream for herself. Stanley makes it clear throughout the play that Blanche is not welcome. He makes it clear early on in the play that he is the man of the house: ” I’m not eating at no Gallitoires” Stanley is not happy that the women are going out to dinner and he expects a meal ready for him. We expect Stanley to have some power over the two women as goes out and earns the money but we see his behaviour as rather extreme when he sexually abuses and finally rapes Blanche:
” She moans. The bottle-top falls. She sinks to her knees, he picks her up and carries her to the bed. ” There are many ways of seeing the reasons why Stanley does this to Blanche. The first is the fact that Blanche had offered sex earlier for a roof over her head and Stanley, being the man of the house expected the same. The second reason is proving to Stella that she has to make a choice between himself and Blanche. The third motive involves proving to Blanche that he is the head of the household. When Blanche is raped by Stanley, her mental deterioration becomes more manifest.
: ” Operator, operator! Give me long distance, please. . . . I want to get in touch with Mr Shep Huntleigh of Dallas. He’s so well-known he doesn’t need an address. ” Blanche is driven by desire, especially the desire to have money, which becomes clear when she talks about Sheep Huntleigh being a millionaire. The primary force that drives Blanche to her destruction is desire, sexual passion. Early on in the play the sisters speak of that sexual desire; Blanche uses too the image of the streetcar for it: ” That rattle-trap street-car”
Throughout his life Tennessee Williams was driven from one sexual encounter to another one, just like Blanche. Also like Blanche he seemed incapable of staying in a permanent relationship. To be driven by desire, the author seems to be saying, is self-destructive, and those who are carried away by overpowering passion are unable to escape. The longing of Blanche for Mitch to marry her arises not from the fact that she wants a sexual encounter but that she wants a secure roof over her head, which she can call her own.
” The poor mans paradise – is a little peace. ” In reference to the set question I do personally believe that Blanche qualifies as a tragic heroine to a large extent. The Shakespearean concept that death is the usual penalty is does not qualify. We know that Blanche does not die, merely that she is taken to an asylum. I believe, and it is very clear in the play that Blanche has a lot of personal weakness, which reinforces the concept of a tragic heroine, although I would not put all the blame down to this fact.
There are people around Blanche that aid the mental deterioration such as the rape by Stanley, and the rejection from Mitch. Blanche is self-destructive, destined to her tragic end. Her personal weaknesses are hugely to blame for this. Tennessee Williams apparently came to see the character of Blanche as a real living person who would go on living outside of the play, he also believed that she would go on living outside of the asylum and marry again.