Books and Movies Reviews

Streetcar named Desire

How relevant is the poker night (Scene three) to our understanding of Blanche, Stella and Stanley?
Scene three is a very relevant part of A Streetcar Named Desire and shows the differences in personalities of each character. This scene illustrates the dominance of Stanley, the forgiveness of Stella and the sense of need within Blanche's character.
The scene opens with a stage direction, and this instantly gives the reader a feel for what the scene might be based around. Williams uses the words, "they are men at the peak of their physical manhood" already suggesting that we will see some illustration of male dominance. We then enter the scene on the poker night, in the middle of a game, to create the image that the reader is intruding and watching in on their lives. Within the four men playing the game, Stanley seems to be very much the'leader of the gang' and makes fun of the others. For example, after Mitch comments on needing to get back to his ill mother, Stanley says "we'll fix you a sugar-tit" to him, suggesting that he is acting like a baby. We also see here that Stanley is very blunt and to the point, for example when Blanche enters and is greeted by the men she tells them not to stand, as this is what she is used to. However, Stanley is almost rude to her and tells her, "Nobody's going to get up, so don't be worried". He also will not let her join in, although this is partly understandable because it is a'man's night in' for him and his friends. When Stella suggests that they stop soon, Stanley slaps her thigh hard. Stella does not like this and it is obviously not something he does very often, but Stanley did it to assert dominance in front of his mates. It was as if to say, "She's only joking, she wouldn't dare to tell me what to do really. I control her". Mitch then leaves the poker game to talk to Blanche. Here we see an e…


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