free booknotes online

Help / FAQ




<- Previous Page | First Page | Next Page ->
MonkeyNotes-A Streetcar Named Desire by Tennessee Williams
Table of Contents | Message Board | Printable Version

Scene 11

Summary

Some weeks later, Stella is packing Blanche's clothes while Stanley and his friends are at the poker table again. Stanley is in an upbeat mood because he is winning. Eunice arrives to help Stella. She comments on the vulgar behavior of the men at the card game. She sets down a bunch of grapes for Stella and tells her that her baby is sleeping peacefully upstairs.

Eunice inquires about Blanche. Stella expresses her guilt about sending her sister away to the state institution, but this seems the only way she can save her marriage. Things have only gotten worse since Blanche has accused Stanley of raping her. Stella still does not believe her sister's story; instead, she has listened to her husband who has convinced Stella that Blanche is mentally ill. Since Blanche will not be able to bear the shock if is she knows her actual destination, she has been told that arrangements have been made for her to rest in the country. But she is so confused that she thinks she is going away with Shep Huntleigh; she believes that Shep will arrive to take her away so she wants to dress like a lady for the occasion.

Stella tells Eunice to praise Blanche`s appearance when she enters because flattery gives Blanche confidence. Blanche emerges and asks Stella if Shep has phoned. Stella answers in the negative. At the sound of Blanche's voice, Mitch's arm sags at the poker table, and he loses his concentration. Stanley scolds him for his distraction. Blanche is shocked to find that Mitch is present. A look of confusion and deep sorrow comes over her face. She suddenly becomes hysterical and asks what is going on. She wonders why Stella and Eunice are watching her strangely. Eunice successfully calms Blanche down. They then get Blanche dressed, all the while admiring her dress, to distract her and to calm her nerves. Blanche is thinking that she would like to die and be buried in a white sack.

Eunice fears Blanche will leave the house before the authorities from the state institution arrive to escort her and tell her to take a seat. Soon, the Doctor and his female assistant arrive in uniform. Blanche develops last-minute jitters and says she isn't quite ready yet. Blanche obviously lacks the confidence to go past the men at the card table, so Stella offers to accompany her.

The men, except Mitch, rise as she goes to the door. Stella and Eunice follow her. But on seeing the Doctor, Blanche rushes back inside, telling Stella, "That man isn't Shep Huntleigh." Stella closes her eyes and clenches her fists. This shows Stella`s state of mind; she is fed up of her sister's habits and wants her to leave. Now she worries whether she will be successful in her plan.

As Blanche goes towards the bedroom, Stanley rises and blocks her way. He asks her if she has forgotten something. Then he yanks the paper lantern off the bulb and cruelly hands it to her; the bright light, which she hates, shines on her. Blanche is fearful and lost; she does not know what this new situation is or where it will lead her. The Doctor tells his assistant to bring Blanche outside. Extreme professionalism has turned the matron into a machine, lacking gentleness or sympathy. Blanche is afraid of her. Stanley tries to take control, and, in his presence, Blanche becomes all the more hysterical and tries to flee. The assistant seizes Blanche's arm and prevents her flight. Blanche becomes wild and scratches her. Stanley tells the Doctor to take over. The Doctor seems to be a kind man who says he prefers to avoid such scenes.


Steve and Pablo comment on the ugliness of the situation. Mitch moves towards Blanche, but Stanley blocks him. Mitch becomes wild and holds Stanley responsible for the whole mess. He strikes Stanley. Steve and Pablo restrain Mitch, who collapses at the table, sobbing.

The assistant asks the Doctor if he needs the straitjacket. He replies, "Not unless necessary". He takes off his hat and becomes more human. His gentle voice is reassuring as he speaks Blanche's name. Her hoarse crying stops when he addresses her with respect as befits a lady. She looks at him with an expression of desperate pleading. She asks him to tell the nurse to release her. He does so. Blanche's trust in the Doctor increases, and she holds her hands out to him. With his support, she walks out saying, "Whoever you are, I have always depended on the kindness of strangers.'' Stella calls out her name, but now Blanche's mind is made up. She goes out without turning around for a parting glance. Eunice places Stella's baby in her arms. Now that it is all over, Stella cries bitterly. Stanley kneels beside her and starts to make advances, soothing Stella in the only way he knows. Steve's closing remark, "This game is a seven card stud," indicates that Stanley's victory is complete. It is man's world in which a lady had no place.

Table of Contents | Message Board | Printable Version


<- Previous Page | First Page | Next Page ->
MonkeyNotes-A Streetcar Named Desire by Tennessee Williams
Google
Web
PinkMonkey

Google
  Web PinkMonkey.com   

All Contents Copyright PinkMonkey.com
All rights reserved. Further Distribution Is Strictly Prohibited.


About Us
 | Advertising | Contact Us | Privacy Policy | Home Page
This page was last updated: 5/9/2017 8:53:32 AM