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SCENE SIX - A Streetcar Named Desire Cheat Sheet by

analysis of the opening of scene six - A Streetcar Named Desire
english     williams     ib     tennessee

SCENE SIX

ANALYSIS
KEY QUOTAT­IONS
Blanche asking of the streetcar is a way for her to tease Mitch; inquiring about the state of his desire- presumably for her.
BLANCHE [laughing grimly]: Is that streetcar named desire still grinding along the tracks at this hour?
This quote alludes to the 'trap' that she has set in order to capture Mitch. To do so she has to make him believe that he has caught her. By acting as though she is pure ad a lady, not only does she maintain her farcade, she also makes herself seem to be a prize that few men have won over.
BLANCHE: Honey, it wasn't the kiss I objected to. (...) It was the other little - famili­arity - that I - felt obliged to- discou­rage.
 
BLANCHE: (...) Je suis la Dame aux Camellias! Vous etes - Armand!
Blanches response to this is to laugh, despite the sincerely meant, but prosaic, declar­ation. This is perhaps because Blanche is so used to hearing this mundane expression from men.
MITCH: (...) I have never known anyone like you.

CONF­LICTING BACKGR­OUNDS

As they get to know each other, Blanche and Mitch recognise their distinct backgr­ounds. Blanche flaunts her French while Mitch doesn't understand a word of it. Mitch talks about mundane things like perspi­ration. Despite their opposing backgr­ounds, they still enjoy each others company. **They share one things that transcends class and backgr­ound: loneli­ness.
 

THE PRESENCE OF DESIRE

Early on in the scene Blanche asks Mitch if "­Des­ire­" is still running. Predom­ina­tely, she is teasing him. However, she also asks in all sincerity as Blanche needs desire to survive. Before coming to live with Stanley and Stella, Blanche lived off men's desire - it gave her a place to live and function within society.

SIGNIF­ICANCE OF SPEAKING FRENCH

"I am the Lady of the Camellias, and you are Armand­!"
"Je suis la Dame aux Camellias! Vous etes - Armand­!"
The Lady of Camellias is a courtesan in a 19th­-Ce­ntury novel by Alexandre Dumas. Her lover Armand reforms her, but before long she dies of tuberc­ulosis.
  
French is considered to be the sexiest language in the world. By speaking it to Mitch she is obviously flirting. However Mitch, unsurp­ris­ingly does not speak French and so does not know that Blanche is flirting with him.
  
Moreover, Paris is said to be the City of Love.

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