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In A Streetcar Named Desire, gender is used to set roles and establish dominance. The woman are meant to be pretty and subservient while the men get to be rough and gruff.
Now, then, let me look at you. But don't you look at me, Stella, no, no, no, not till later, not till I've bathed and rested! And turn that over-light off! Turn that off! I won't be looked at in this merciless glare!
On the contrary, I saw him at his best! What such a man has to offer is animal force and he gave a wonderful exhibition of that! But the only way to live with such a man is to--go to bed with him! And that's your job--not mine!
In this first moment, Blanche is describing the role of men. She sees that having a raw and blunt nature for a man is quite good, however it only something that a woman with said man can enjoy. This is gender commentary as it brings up the whole idea of what men and women are truly meant to do. In this instance, Blanche feels that one of the duties of man is so to fulfill a sexual desire, which is somewhat ironic as most cases it is the women filling out said role. Williams makes the notion that our society has set views on each gender, but vary from which gender is speaking about it.
Why did you try if you didn't feel like it, Blanche?
The one that says the lady must entertain the gentleman--or no dice! See if you can locate my door-key in this purse. When I'm so tired my fingers are all thumbs!
I was just obeying the law of nature
Which law is that?
In this moment, Blanche talks about women's role. She says how woman or "ladies" do the job of entertaining the man. In this scene, she was out on a date with Mitch, but most of the time she was trying to fake having a good time. Despite the bad time, and the evidence that Mitch knew what she was doing, she accepts it and writes it off as what a woman must do. It brings up the whole notion that woman are in a sense toys, meant for amusement. Again, like the the previous moment, the roles of a gender are set. Williams brings this to society as he shows that woman accept such notion. This is not an issue they are fighting against, rather they see it as being an actual "law of nature."
Tennessee Williams uses the words of Blanche to create an idea that gender in society revolves around pleasing the other the sex. This idea is both viewed on the other sex, as well as the same sex. It is not questioned, and is simply a fact of life. Men are suppose to dominate the women, while the women amuse the men. Right from birth, we are placed in the roles in which our world assumes is proper, we can either fight them with a struggle or follow with obedience, but which option better is unknown.
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