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Character Comparisons; Comparing Two Characters, One from Streetcar Named Desire and Another from Death of a Salesman

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Character comparisons; Comparing two characters, one from Streetcar Named Desire and another from Death of a Salesman
Streetcar Named Desire
Blanche Du Bois
In the Streetcar Named Desire, Blanche Dubois is first introduced having dressed in white and symbolizing chastity and innocence. As sensitive, aristocratic, and refined as it is, the beauty depicts an appearance resembling a moth. Blanche comes from a background that is aristocratic. Her job, as an English teacher, as well as her home are all lost and in turn, she comes to stay in her sister’s house for a while, Stella, who stays with her husband Stanley, a coarse polish. Her lover passed away and since then she has changed her life completely. Blanche is seen to be a misfit in the apartment of Kowalski due to her nervous and refined nature.
Blanche has spent the rest of her life in Laurel with her family that had aristocratic roots and from which she learned the finer things and issues in life. She is incapable of coping with the life outside Laurel, a life that gives her a lesson on how a tragic event can participate in ruining the future. She is flighty and unrealistic because she refuses to move out of the time warp and hence get used to the real world. As young as sixteen, she slobbers in love with a sensitive boy, whom she worships and elopes with. According to her understanding and believe, life with Allan had turned sheer bliss. However, her faith turns fully shattered as she realizes that he was bisexual degenerate. This disguised her so much to an extent that she expressed the disappointment in him, prompting Allan to commit suicide.
Blanche is now incapable of getting over the incidence and as a result holds herself responsible for Allan’s sudden death. Long vigils come after his death, at the bedside of her relatives whom passes away. With no option, she sells the mansion of the family, Belle Reve, in order to get money and cater for the funeral expenses. She goes to “second rate flamingo hotel” where she starts living in. She heavily drinks alcohol and indulges in meaningless affairs for the sake of escaping her life misery in Laurel. To bring the polka music to an end, which is a symbol of the death of Allan, Blanche needs alcohol to keep it out of run in her mind, and hence avoid the reality of her life. She makes an unworthy attempt to lose herself by surrendering her body carelessly to certain strangers, and hence seduces the young men in Allan memory. Nevertheless, there is no peace in her empty heart, and her poor reputation terminates her career as a teacher.
Blanche appears to be an escapist who hides from truth and bright lights. Her nature was too delicate to bear with the current day existence reality, which is too painful to her. She further convinces herself that she is pure, as her inner soul was fully away and never involved in her physical encounters. In response, she considers herself prim, proper, and virtuous, and hence dismisses them. This is what destroys her last prospect of marriage, that is, her attempt to appear good and virtuous. After meeting a close friend of Stanley, Mitch, his sensitive mild nature had drawn her. However, he loves her believing that she was innocent and pure. She fully plays her part in the courtship perfectly, such that she even confirms that she is different from other girls, in that, she is not as easy as many girls are.
Mitch is quite horrible after discovering Blanches past, feeling that he has been duped. In this case, things would be different if she had kept being truthful with him from the beginning. Since Mitch was uneducated, and hence not intellectual, he could not understand her behavior, including her past and present. For the fact that he views things only as white or black, lies or truth, he had to desert Blanche.
The world of Blanche is fully occupied by pastel and gray colors, as she has no position to stand loud noise, harsh light, or vulgar remark. The death of Allan led to the disappearance of light in her life. In this case, she highly prefers dim candlelight together with darkness, and her entire make setting believes in a pain and memories free world. It also does not depict her advancing age and departed youth reality. As she prefers more to appear as ethereal character that lives on the world edge, the moth’s smile fully befits her.
Stanley, who appears to be course and common, presents Blanche’s aristocratic and delicate ways as he relies on openness and truth. He even demands total allegiance in his household, which she cannot offer. Stanley cannot forgive her for his threats, and even swears to revenge. Mitch and Stanley are not realizing that although Blanche gives herself easily to strangers, it is impossible for her to surrender as a prostitute to whom she cares about. Through her sexual encounters, she willingly and freely gives herself to strangers. Her fragile nature is destroyed as Stanley takes her forcefully. It is ironical that when she tells Stella on this rape issue, Stella disagrees with her. Instead, Stella sends her to state institution for the safety of her marriage.
Throughout the play, Blanche is tragic with supreme sacrifice capability through her act of nursing the elatives who are dying. After the death of her husband, she endures excess suffering and guilt. It is hence her fatal law, and cannot allow the past go. She gives way for aristocratic ideals to pound on her heart and the polka music to play on her mind. Nevertheless, she can face neither the present nor the future, and rather covers herself in a world of dreams that destroys her eventually. She really lies on everything about herself, her situation, her age, and even her appearance. Consequently, it is through her delicacy and sensitivity that she is highly affected by people’s brutality around her. She has thoroughly depended on the strangers kindness, and hence responsible for her decline.
Death of a Salesman
Willy Loman
Willy Loman acts as the protagonist and main character in the play death of a sales man. He works at the lowest position in Winger Company as a travelling salesperson, a job he has done for more than thirty years. Since he is less successful in sales, his income earning is meager and only owns little. All his possessions including his house, refrigerator, and his car are old, used up, and hence falling apart, just as he is. However, he turns unable to face the reality about himself. With the idea of a kid, he believes that his customers all over the New England territory like him, same as the company, that intends to promote him or give him more opportunities to raise higher income.
His dream and aspiration is to be like Dave single-man, a man who was very popular with his clients, whom could also do his business through phone calls. For he was well liked, there were many customers all over his region who came for Single-man’s funeral after his death, a funeral that Willy dares think the one for himself will be similar to. Ironically, after committing suicide, there was no one who bothered to attend his funeral, hence a proven error to his fake philosophies. In his entire life, Willy believed that it is only through being attractive and well liked that everything could move on perfectly. For such a person, Willy thought that doors would always open automatically and hence he was quite sure of being successful.
To believe that he was successful with his family, he lies to himself and spends all of his life in an illusion world. He even pledges to himself that all the towns he visits like him, as well as all the customers that he often calls on. Erroneously, he believes that he is a vital man to the territory of New England, and in future, he would be granted a promotion as a result of his persistent hard work. Funny enough, he lies not even to the boss, but also to himself about how much he really earns. To prove further to himself on how much he is well liked, Willy involves himself in a single affair in which he attracts a young woman through his offer to buy her a pair of silk stockings. As Biff identifies his father with a woman in a hotel room, he recognizes Willy as fake and a liar.
Showing illusion to his two sons, Willy is convinced that his son, Happy is a kind of successful man who will in future be the store manager. However, like father, Happy is a loser by nature still existing in illusion world, and hence contributes to keep his father’s controversies. Despite that he possess a personal car and an apartment, and is in relationship, he eventually admitted that he was unhappy and lonely, having no single means to raise happiness. Willy is shown to be more naive to Biff. This is because of his best performance as an athlete in school, with whom Willy believes their fate lies on. He eventually fails miserably and cannot continue with education. He develops to become a compulsive thief, losing all jobs as a result. Biff admits himself of being a total failure. Willy assumes and ignores all the truth, even when Biff admits it. Foolishly, he commits suicide that his life insurance funds would benefit Biff, thinking that twenty thousand dollars could come out with any benefit.
Willy is such a tragic figure fully responsible for his downfall blames. His lack of effectiveness, being a liar who is always angry fires him off his job. His judgments are wrong concerning his sons, and hence fail to accept the truth behind them. He keeps his wife totally dependent on him, of which she supports his illusions and convinces him that he was a good provider. Through his ability to lie together with the lack of reasoning, he justifies his death as a sacrifice, thinking that he would save his son. His life is full of lies. He was fully the blame of his death. However, he dies as a husband and father, rather than a salesperson as indicated in the play title.
In conclusion, both characters in the two plays are tragic, having gone through lives full of lies, not only to other people, but also to themselves. In Streetcar Named Desire, Blanche really lies on everything about herself, including her situation, her age, and even her appearance, while in death of a sales man, Willy lies to ‘himself’ and spends all of his life in an illusion world. However, they have eventually faced the wrath of their consequences as both plays end with each character being clearly depicted as the cause of their failures. Blanche is responsible for her decline due to her delicacy and sensitivity, while Willy is responsible and the blame of his death due to his lies and illusions.

Works cited
Miller, Arthur, and Thomas Mitchell. Death of a Salesman. S.l: s.n, 1900. Sound recording.
Williams, Tennessee, and Ray Speakman. A Streetcar Named Desire. Oxford [etc.: Heinemann,
1995. Print.

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