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Adaptation in A Streetcar Named Desire Essay


It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent, but the one most responsive to change. These famous words were spoken by 19th century British scientist, Charles Darwin. By saying that the most physically fit humans will not survive, Darwin describes that change is the key instance to survival in a world dominated by brutes. These traits are shared by Tennessee Williams in the play A Streetcar Named Desire. Tennessee Williams used Stanley as an example of Charles Darwins theory. In the play, Stanley is strong, brutal, and commanding. Although not very intelligent, he is the only survivor remaining and comes out on top. His struggle winning over Stella from Blanch is an example of his dominant nature he wants to show. According to Williams, only the fittest survive in a world where sympathy is not spared for the weak.

First of all, Stanley is the fittest man in the play because of his dominant nature over others. During the scene when Stanley, Stella, and Blanche are eating at the dinner table, Stella notices that Stanley looks like a mess and tells him to go in the kitchen and clear his table. Stanley smashes his plate and lets everyone know, "that's how I'll clear the table! Don't ever talk that way to me!", that is Stanley's way of asserting his control by spreading fear around other and showing that he is king of the house and won't be told what to do. Above all, by asserting power to himself, Stanley proves that "every man is king! and I'm the king around here" to Stella and Blanche who then see his vicious and aggressive nature. Consequently, Stanley asserts his right to be dominant by presenting a clear visual of how he is king of the house.

Blanche is the sensitive type that cannot look after herself and depends on the support of others to get through everyday life. During the scene when Mitch is demanding to see Blanche with realism, she doesn't "want realism, [she] wants magic!" and admits to misrepresenting herself to people and telling lies. Blanche does not understand that you cannot rely on others to survive in such a brutal world; one must rely on their own strength and come out on top. She cannot handle the reality of a cruel and unforgiving world, and that is shown whenever someone sheds the light on her.

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