In most of the classic plays we studied in high school, numerous events and rebounding occurred one after the other that enabled the plot to move forward. At the end of the play, the situations used to evolve and the characters' lives had often changed. However, in this work, the final situation is almost the same as that at the beginning because all the characters return pretty much to their initial situation at the end of the play. True, Stanley and Stella have a baby but they go on living together in the same place, Mitch stays alone and still spends his time taking care of his mother and Blanche becomes lonely again. Besides, the most striking example of the permanence of the situation is that the same event, the poker night, occurs at the beginning of the play and is also the last scene.
This event which seems to frame the play, is not the only action repeated several times in it. Actually, after a thorough reading, we notice that throughout the play the characters, especially Blanche, repeated a few actions and that some themes are recurrent. This observation brings us to question in what way these repetitions influence Blanche's behavior and state of mind. Do these actions help Blanche dismiss the past from her mind and begin a new life? Or is it the contrary? Do they quicken her departure from sanity? To what extent does the other characters' behavior influence her views on life?
[...] All of her actions follow her desire to be surrounded by magic and to believe in a fantasy world where one's appearance is essential. As a result, she keeps trying to become invisible when she is outside and avoids appearing in bright light and spends all her time taking great care of her appearance by using many physical tropes like wonderful dresses, brilliant jewelery and make-up. She also bathes often and long as we mainly see in the first part of the play. [...]
[...] Just a few hours before this dance, she had discovered her husband's homosexuality and even if she had claimed that nothing happened, during this polka she confessed that he disgusted her. Just a few minutes later, he committed suicide. As a result, the hearing of this music is like a re-enactment of the suicide scene; each time she hears it she lives again this atrocious moment which represents her disillusion, her loss of innocence and has triggered this mental disorder. [...]
[...] At last, in Scene Ten, the phone call is her only way out in front of Stanley; she cries for help, it is a distress call: desperate, desperate circumstances! Help as if she has finally realized the gravity of her situation but she doesn't have any solution for survival. However, I noticed that during the poker night Stanley “hurls phone to the floor” and this must be a symbolic gesture to show that it is impossible for Blanche to escape, whatever her attempts were, it is a waste of time and they are not worth the trouble. [...]
[...] The papers embody these losses; she has kept them with her because these events are now a part of herself, and that must be why she reacts so violently when Stanley touches them. Aside from these elements which can be considered as evidence and witnesses of Blanche's past, we notice other references to papers. For example, the Chinese paper lantern she puts on the light, the title of the song she hums in the bath “Paper Moon” and above all the local paper, The Evening Star, for which the young man is collecting in Scene Five. [...]
[...] Indeed, both share a significant penchant for alcohol and drink excessively several times during the play. However, their relationship with alcohol is different. Unlike Stanley who principally drinks with his friends, during the poker night or at the bar, Blanche drinks alone, in secrecy, as we can see in the first scene. For her, drinking is another way to break away from harsh reality, to let her imagination soar and to dismiss totally the real world from her mind. Moreover, even if the alcohol leads to a destructive behavior for both of them since Stanley is violent and mistreats his wife in Scene Three and Blanche falls little by little into insanity; Stanley manages to pull through and forget his bad behavior whereas Blanche stays in her imaginary world and goes on to blast herself. [...]
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