ReneeBelville: The Abusive Relationship!
and find homework help for other A Streetcar Named Desire questions at eNotes. that it is somehow not an abusive relationship between Stanley and Stella. Williams presents Stanley and Stella's relationship as being complex. A Streetcar Named Desire, questions on Scene 2In "Blanche". Stanley and Stella are married and their relationship seems to be healthy on the first glance. When Stanley hits Stella she instantly removes.
In a patriarchal society s AmericaStanley feels the need to use societal attitudes to support his claims, which presents him as insecure his claims are not strong enough to hold up on their own.
The relationship between Stella and Stan
The use of formal, complex lexis such as the polysyllabic noun-phrase "Napoleonic code" and its incongruity in Stanley's simulated naturalistic dialogue also foreground a sense of stupidity, or at least intellectual deficiency, in his discourse and his obliviousness to this.
Stella attempts to reassert dominance in the discourse by interrupting Stanley's tirade his speech is cut short "of property-" and using the exclamation "my head is swimming! In this speech, Stella subtly conforms to the patriarchal expectation of a confused, uninformed woman to satisfy Stanley's ego - she does not have to argue with him rationally.Stanley and Stella
This is ironic as it both diminishes and empowers Stella in the relationship - she is able to control Stanley, by conforming to his desires; this is a key theme throughout their relationship in the play, sexually specifically. Stanley and Stella both place prosodic emphasis on certain phrases to express their anger and impatience, which adds to the growing tension and potential sexual subtext in the scene - an effect Williams often achieves via 'Plastic Theatre'.
For example, Stanley emphasises the past-participle "swindled" which has connotations of weakness and lack of pride, at odds with Stanley's macho self-image - he does so in order to cast blame externally.
Stella style-matches to this by calling him an "idiot" and prosodically stressing the pronoun-verb-phrase "I'm" - this stresses her agency the use of present tense also emphasises this and subsequent power in the relationship, but also shows how Stella comes to resemble Stanley. Like him, she shouts and orders towards the end of the extract, and this emphasises a key cause of Blanche's tragic fall in the play - Stella has become like Stanley, she has modernised, urbanised and adapted to the patriarchal expectations of men like Stanley, whereas Blanche hasn't, she still perceives herself as a Southern Belle.
The impact of Stella and Stanley's relationship on Blanche is also emphasised by the dramatic irony in the scene - Blanche is "getting dressed" and unaware of the argument concerning her finances that the audience are privy to. Stanley and Stella are willing to forgive each other for mistakes they have made whereas Blanche and Mitch are trying to get to know each other more and perhaps lack the levels of trust that Stella and Stanley have.
How and why does Stella return back to Stanley? Although Stella and Stanley have conflicted in the play, culminating in Stanley hitting Stella, we see that they both truly love each other after they rejoice at the end of the scene.
The surprise of Blanche that they have done this shows that even she cant believe Stella has gone back to him, showing that they truly love each other.
She cannot bear to think about life without Stanley and so will continue to love him no matter what he does. Williams leaves the reader wondering how far Stanley can push the boundaries and if Stella would ever leave him, no matter what he does. How do the stage directions represent their relationship?
The stage directions in Scene 3 show that Stanley is dominating force in the relationship, albeit a violent one. These stage directions show how there are problems in their relationship and how Stanley struggles to deal with problems he is having.
Scene 3: how does Williams represent the relationship of Stanley and Stella?
As his friends are also there, he could be warning them not to cross him; if he is prepared to hit his wife he is prepared to do it to them. It also reinforces the idea that Stanley is the dominant force of the relationship as she depends on him so much that she will never want to leave him.
The stage directions give and insight into their topsy-turvy relationship and that they depend on each other too much for incidents like this to break them apart.