Blanche sees Staley as keeping Stella in his grasp through his unpretentious, powerful sexual attraction and nothing more, never giving Stanley credit for any ‘higher’ feelings. The basic differences in Blanche’s and Stanley’s social stations and relationship to Stella expand into larger issues that make compromise impossible. The fact that they are both fighting for survival is a similarity. However the principals and notions governing why they do this are almost entirely different.
The reasons the two struggle may be almost entirely different and the notions that govern them too, although there is one reason for struggle that the two hold in common. That reason is the search for love and affection from those they hold dear to them. In Williams’ play Stanley shows his desire for love and affection in a very primal and sexual manner. His lust for Stella is obvious describing her in scene three as “my baby doll” and after nearly losing her is described as falling “on his knees on the steps and his face into her belly, curving a little with maternity”.Order now
Blanche throughout the play is also searching for love and affection however goes about this search in a very different way. Blanche prefers to live in the world of fantasy, as she admits to Mitch, she found the man she loved in bed with another man, saying “by coming suddenly into a room that I thought was empty, but had two people in it”. It becomes clear at this point that Blanche wants to misrepresent things and live life how she thinks it ought to be rather than the way that it is. Blanch goes on to tell Mitch that “afterwards we pretended that nothing had ever been discovered”.
It is this misrepresentation of life that helps better explain how Blanche goes about her search for love and affection. The affection Blanche seeks is similar to Stanley’s as it is also a physical dependence on another. Stanley relies on Stella but Blanche, after losing the young man that she loved describes herself as reliant on strangers, ironically telling the doctor in scene eleven “Whoever you are-I have always depended on the kindness of strangers”. Blanche’s demise at this point is complete as her search for love and struggle against reality has driven her insane.
Blanche still refuses, out of shear fear, to let herself believe that her reliance on strangers has done her ill. In reality strangers seem only to have been kind to her in exchange for sex after Blanche lost Belle Reve; and others such as Stanley and Mitch have failed to give her the sympathy she deserves. However misguided both the Kowalski’s and the Du Bois are strongly led by a lust or desire to love and be loved, and without question in this case they are alike. In conclusion I believe that the Kowalski’s and Dubois are quite similar in their actions.
However, and ultimately, the motivation behind their actions, notions and philosophy on life is so different that the two, by the end of the play at least, are without doubt very far from alike. In addition I believe that Stanley and Blanche’s perspective on life could be proved as different due to success. Of course this is not success in social status or wealth but success defined as fulfilling one’s own goals. Both characters strive for control and affection however only Stanley really fulfils this goal.
Stanley through his primitive, hot blooded and masculine nature demands control over those around him and has untiring love from his wife, Stella. Blanche on the other hand does not have either of these things; Blanche failed to undermine Stanley and gain Stella’s respect, she also failed in controlling Mitch and the other men with her false femininity and flirtation. As far as love and affection for Blanche is concerned, this had been Blanche’s principal focus since the suicide of her lover after she caught him cheating on her with another man.
Ironically this focus ultimately led to her downfall and her living in a world devoid of reality as she prostituted herself in a feeble attempt to grasp men’s affection. The success of the Kowalski’s and failure of Blanche is strong evidence of the differences in notions that drive the Characters. Therefore I agree with the statement almost entirely as that the Kowalski’s and Du Bois have very different primary notions that motivate them in throughout the play.