“A Streetcar Named Desire” Full Play Quotes


This is the copy I took the quotes from- in case you want to check the page references

Scene 1

“Elysian Fields” (pg 1)

“The houses are mainly white frame, weathered grey, with rickety outside stairs” (pg 1)

“The sky… is a peculiarly tender blue” (pg 1)

“…lyricism and gracefully attenuates the atmosphere of decay” (pg 1)

“In this part of New Orleans you are practically always just around the corner… from a tinny piano” (pg 1)

“This ‘blue piano’ expresses the spirit of life which goes on here” (pg 1)

“Ret hots! Red hots!” (pg 2)

“a red-stained package from a butcher’s” (pg 2)

“a background obviously quite different from her husband’s” (pg 2)

“Her expression is one of shocked disbelief” (pg 3)

“Her appearance is incongruous to this setting” (pg 3)

“Her delicate beauty must avoid a strong light” (pg 3)

“There is something about her uncertain manner, as well as her white clothes, that suggest a moth” (pg 3)

“They told me to take a streetcar named Desire, and then transfer to one called Cemeteries and ride 6 blocks, and get off at- Elysian Fields!” (pg 3)

“She pours a half tumbler of whiskey with tosses it down” (pg 5)

“Blanche springs up and runs to her with a wild cry” (pg 5)

“I know you must have liquor on the place! Where could it be, I wonder? Oh, I spy, I spy!” (pg 6)

“She rushes to the closet and removes the bottle; she is shaking all over” (pg 6)

“Daylight never exposed so total a ruin” (pg 8)

“She laughs nervously and glances at Stella for reassurance” (pg 9)

“I want to be near you, got to be with somebody, I can’t be alone!” (pg 10)

“Will Stanley like me?” (pg 10)

“[about Stanley] a different species” (pg 10)

“When he’s away for a week I nearly go wild” (pg 10)

“You left! I stayed and struggled! …all the burden descended on my shoulders” (pg 11)

“I stayed and fought for it, bled for it, almost died for it!” (pg 11)

“Stop this hysterical outburst” (pg 11)

“You’re a fine one to sit there accusing me of it!” (pg 11)

“I took the blows to my face and my body!” (pg 12)

“Where were you. In bed with your- Polack!” (pg 12)

“Animal joy in his being is implicit in all his movements” (pg 13)

“the centre of his life has been pleasure with women” (pg 13)

“power and pride of a richly feathered male bird among hens” (pg 13)

“his emblem of the gaudy seed-bearer” (pg 13)

“he sizes women up at a glance, with sexual classifications, crude images flashing into his mind and determining the way he smiles at them” (pg 13)

“drawing involuntarily back from his stare” (pg 13)

“not in my territory” (pg 14)

Scene 2

“when she comes in be sure to say something nice about her appearance” (pg 17)

“admire her dress and tell her she’s looking wonderful” (pg 17)

“That’s important to Blanche. Her little weakness” (pg 17)

“He stalks into the bedroom” (pg 18)

“And diamonds! A crown for an empress!”
“A rhinestone tiara she wore to a costume ball”
“What’s rhinestone?”
“Next door to glass” (pg 19)

“The Kowalski’s and the DuBois have different notions” (pg 19)

“Since when do you give me orders?” (pg 19)

“Would you think it possible that I was once considered attractive?”
“Your looks are okay” (pg 21)

“You’re simple, straightforward and honest, a little bit on the primitive side I should think” (pg 21)

“I like an artist who paints a story, bold colours, primary colours” (pg 21)

“I have an idea that she doesn’t understand you as well as I do” (pg 22)

“playfully sprays him” (pg 22)

“he seizes the atomizer and slams it down on the dresser” (pg 22)

“If I didn’t know that you was my wife’s sister I’d get ideas about you” (pg 22)

“He snatches them up. She speaks fiercely” (pg 23)

“I hurt him the way that you would like to hurt me, but you can’t” (pg 23)

“Yes- I was flirting with your husband, Stella!” (pg 25)

“He’s just not the sort that goes for jasmine perfume!” (pg 25)

“Blanche utters a sharp, frightened cry and shrinks away” (pg 25)

Scene 3

“lurid nocturnal brilliance” (pg 27)

“raw colours” (pg 27)

“over the yellow linoleum of the kitchen table hangs an electric bulb with a vivid green glass shade” (pg 27)

“wear coloured shirts, solid blues, a purple, a red-and-white check, a light green” (pg 27)

“they are men at the peak of their physical manhood, as coarse and direct and powerful as the primary colours” (pg 27)

“Please don’t get up”
“Nobody’s going to get up, so don’t be worried” (pg 27)

“Stanley gives a loud whack of this hand on her thigh” (pg 29)

“That’s not fun Stanley” (pg 29)

“It makes me so mad when he does that in front of people” (pg 29)

“You’re standing in the light, Blanche!” (pg 31)

“Blanche moves back into the streak of light” (pg 31)

“She moves indolently” (pg 31)

“She returns his look without flinching” (pg 32)

“Sorrow makes for sincerity, I think” (pg 33)

“I can’t stand a naked lightbulb, any more than I can a rude remark or a vulgar action” (pg 34)

“It’s touching to notice them making their first discovery of love! As if nobody had ever known it before!” (pg 35)

“Stanley stalks fiercely” (pg 35)

“There is the sound of a blow. Stella cries out. Blanche screams and runs” (pg 35)

“Stanley is… pinioned by the two men… he nearly throws them off” (pg 36)

“He throws his head back like a baying hound” (pg 37)

“I hope they do haul you in and turn the fire hose on you, same as the last time!” (pg 38)

“with heaven-splitting silence” (pg 38)

“they come together with low, animal moans” (pg 38)

“Thank you for being so kind! I need kindness now” (pg 38)

Scene 4

“Her eyes and lips have that almost narcotized tranquility that is in the face of Eastern idols” (pg 40)

“the debris of the preceding night” (pg 40)

“He was as good as a lamb when I came back and he’s really very, very ashamed of himself” (pg 41)

“On our wedding night… he snatched off one of my slippers and rushed about the place smashing the lightbulbs out with it” (pg 41)

“I’m going to do something. Get gold of myself and make myself a new life” (pg 42)

“We’ve got to get a hold of some money, that’s our way out!” (pg 43)

“This morning he gave me $10 to smooth things over” (pg 45)

“What such a man has to offer is animal force and he gave a wonderful exhibition of that!” (pg 45)

“What you’re talking about is brutal desire- just- Desire!” (pg 46)

“There’s something downright bestial about him!” (pg 47)

“He acts like an animal, has an animals habits” (pg 47)

“Thousands and thousands of years have passed him right by, and there he is- Stanley Kowalski- survivor of the Stone Age!” (pg 47)

“Bearing the raw meat home from the kill in the jungle” (pg 47)

“Maybe he’ll strike you or maybe grunt and kiss you!” (pg 47)

“Stanley hesitates, licking his lips” (pg 47)

“Over her head he grins through the curtains at Blanche” (pg 48)

Scene 5

“A disturbance is heard upstairs at the Hubbel’s apartment” (pg 49)

“A clatter… is heard, followed by a man’s angry roar, shouts, and overturned furniture” (pg 50)

“She and Steve had a row. Has she got the police?”
“Naw. She’s getting a drink.”
“That’s much more practical.” (pg 50)

“At each noise Blanche winces slightly” (pg 51)

“I bet you were born under Aries” (pg 51)

“Capricorn- the goat” (pg 51)

“Virgo is the virgin”
“[contemptuously] Hah!” (pg 51)

“She speaks lightly but her voice has a note of fear” (pg 52)

“Eunice… is sobbing luxuriously and he is cooing love words” (pg 52)

“Soft people… have got to be seductive- put on soft colours… make a little temporary magic just in order to pay for one night’s shelter” (pg 53)

“Men don’t even admit your existence unless they are making love to you” (pg 53)

“You’ve got to have your existence admitted by someone, if you’re going to have someone’s protection” (pg 53)

“Soft people have got to… put a paper lantern over the light” (pg 53)

“I don’t know how much longer I can turn the trick” (pg 53)

“He thinks I’m sort of prim and proper… and I want to deceive him enough to make him want me” (pg 55)

“Young man! Young, young, young, young man.” (pg 57)

“Without waiting for him to accept, she crosses quickly to him and presses her lips to his” (pg 57)

“I’ve got to be good and keep my hands off children” (pg 57)

Scene 6

“The utter exhaustion which only a neurasthetic personality can know is evident in Blanche” (pg 59)

“I was just obeying the law of nature… the one that says the lady must entertain the gentleman- or no dice!” (pg 60)

“That night when we parked by the lake and I kissed you!”
“Honey, it wasn’t the kiss I objected to… it was the other little- familiarity- that I felt obliged to discourage” (pg 60)

“Understand French?”
“Naw. Naw, I”
“Voulez-vous couchez avec moi ce soir? Vous ne comprenez pas? Ah- quel dommage! I mean it’s a damned good thing” (pg 61)
[Translation: Will you sleep with me tonight? You don’t understand? That’s a shame!]

“I guess it is just that I have old fashioned ideals” (pg 63)

“She rolls her eyes, knowing he cannot see her face” (pg 63)

“He stalks through the rooms in his underwear at night” (pg 65)

“When I was 16, I made the discovery- love” (pg 66)

“It was like you suddenly turned a blinding light on something that had always been half in shadow” (pg 66)

“But I was unlucky” (pg 66)

“We danced the ‘Varsouviana’!” (pg 67)

“The polka stops abruptly” (pg 67)

“He’d stuck a revolver into his mouth, and fired- so that the back of his head had been blown away!” (pg 67)

“It was because- on the dancefloor- unable to stop myself- I’d suddenly said- ‘I know! I know! You disgust me…'” (pg 67)

“And then the searchlight which had been turned on the world was turned off again and never for one moment has there been any more light that’s stronger than this kitchen candle” (pg 67)

Scene 7

“Blanche is sining in the bathroom a saccharine popular ballad which is used contrapuntally with Stanley’s speech” (pg 70)

“Sister Blanche is no lily” (pg 70)

“This is after the place had slipped through her lily-white fingers!” (pg 70)

“They were so impressed by Dame Blanche that they requested her to turn in her room key- for permanently!” (pg 71)

“As time went by she became a town character. Regarded by as not just different but downright loco- nuts!” (pg 71)

“They kicked her out of that high school before the spring term ended- and I hate to tell you the reason… a 17 year old boy she’d gotten mixed up with!” (pg 72)

“Possess you soul in patience!”
“It’s not my soul I’m worried about” (pg 73)

“When she was young, very young, she had an experience that killed her illusions” (pg 73)

“Her future is mapped out for her” (pg 75)

“The distant piano goes into a hectic breakdown” (pg 75)

Scene 8

“Blanche has a tight, artificial smile on her drawn face” (pg 76)

“Stanley… reaches way over the table to spear his fork into the remaining chop which he eats with his fingers” (pg 77)

“Mr. Kowalski is too busy making a pig of himself to think of anything else.” (pg 77)

“He hurls a plate to the floor” (pg 77)

“I am the king around here, so don’t forget it” (pg 77)

“It’s gonna be alright after she goes” (pg 78)

“It’s gonna be sweet when we can make noise in the night the way we used to and get the coloured lights going with nobody’s sister behind the curtains to hear us” (pg 79)

“His auntie knows candles aren’t safe, that candles burn out in little boys’ and girls’ eyes… after that… electric lightbulbs go on and you see too plainly” (pg 79)

“I am not a Polack. People from Poland and Poles, not Polacks. But what I am in a hundred percent American… and proud as hell of it, so don’t ever call me a Polack” (pg 79)

“She clutches her throat and then runs into the bathroom. Coughing, gagging sounds are heard.” (pg 81)

“But people like you abused her, and forced her to change” (pg 81)

“I pulled you down off them columns and how you loved it, having them coloured lights going! And wasn’t we happy together?” (pg 81)

“Her look goes suddenly inward as if some interior voice had called her name… Stanley… is unaware of her reaction” (pg 81)

Scene 9

“The rapid, feverish polka tune, the ‘Varsouviana’, is heard. The music is in her mind” (pg 83)

“She is drinking to escape it” (pg 83)

“The sense of disaster is closing in on her” (pg 83)

“Here’s something. Southern Comfort! What is that I wonder?” (pg 85)

“He says you been lapping it up all summer like a wildcat!” (pg 85)

“I like it dark. The dark is comforting to me” (pg 86)

“He tears the paper lantern off the bulb. She utters a frightened gasp” (pg 86)

“I don’t want realism! … I’ll tell you what I want. Magic!” (pg 86)

“Magic! I try to give that to people… I don’t tell the truth, I tell what ought to be the truth!” (pg 86)

“The Tarantula Arms… Yes, a big spider. That’s where I brought my victims” (pg 87)

“She throws her head back with convulsive, sobbing laughter” (pg 87)

“You seemed to be gentle- a cleft in the tock of the world that I could hide in!” (pg 88)

“Flores para muertos” (pg 88)

“I lived in a house where dying old women remembered their dead men” (pg 88)

“Other things such as blood-stained pillow-slips… I used to sit here… and death was as close as you are” (pg 88)

“The opposite is desire” (pg 89)

Scene 10

“She has decked herself out in a somewhat soiled and crumpled white satin evening gown and a pair of scuffed silver slippers” (pg 90)

“She lifts the hand mirror for a closer inspection. She catches her breath and slams the mirror face down with such violence that the glass cracks” (pg 90)

“You left before my wire came” (pg 90)

“Physical beauty is passing. A transitory possession. But beauty og the mind and richness of the spirit… aren’t taken away, but grow!” (pg 93)

“How strange that I should be called a destitute woman!” (pg 93)

“I think of myself as a very, very rich woman” (pg 93)

“Deliberate cruelty is not forgivable” (pg 93)

“Our ways of life are too different. Our attitudes and backgrounds are incompatible” (pg 94)

“As a matter of fact there wasn’t no wire at all” (pg 94)

“There isn’t a goddamn thing but imagination” (pg 94)

“I’ve been onto you from the start” (pg 94)

“lurid reflections appear on the walls… shadows are of a grotesque and menacing form” (pg 94)

“the night is filled with inhuman voices like cries in a jungle” (pg 95)

“the back wall of the rooms… have become transparent” (pg 95)

“A prostitute has rolled a drunkard… there is a struggle… the negro woman appears… with a sequined bag which the prostitute has dropped” (pg 95)

“He takes a step towards her, biting his tongue which protrudes from his lips” (pg 96)

“come to think of it maybe you wouldn’t be so bad to interfere with” (pg 96)

“He springs towards her” (pg 97)

“We’ve had this date with each other from the beginning” (pg 97)

“He picks up her inert figure and carries her to the bed” (pg 97)

Scene 11

“The atmosphere of the kitchen is now the same raw, lurid one of the disastrous poker night” (pg 99)

“I just told her that we’d made arrangements for her to rest in the country” (pg 99)

“I couldn’t believe her story and go on living with Stanley”
“Don’t ever believe it. No matter what happens, you’ve got to keep on going.” (pg 99)

“Blanche appears in the amber light of the door. She has a tragic radiance in her red satin robe” (pg 100)

“A look of sorrowful perplexity as though all human experience shows on her face” (pg 100)

“Those cathedral bells- they’re the only clean thing in the Quarter” (pg 101)

“And I’ll be buried at sea sewn up in a clean white sack and dropped overboard at noon in the blaze of summer and into an ocean as blue as my first lover’s eyes” (pg 102)

“The ‘Varsouviana’ is playing distantly” (pg 104)

“lurid reflections appear on the walls in odd sinuous shapes. The ‘Varsouviana’ is filtered into weird distortion, accompanied by the cries and noises of the jungle” (pg 104)

“The Matron is a peculiarly sinister figure in her severe dress” (pg 104)

“The greeting is echoed and re-rechoed by other mysterious voices… in threatening whispers” (pg 104)

“He… seizes the paper lantern, tearing is off the lightbulb, and extends it toward her. She cries out as if the lantern was herself” (pg 105)

“What have I done to my sister?”
“You done the right thing, the only thing you could do.” (pg 105)

“The inhuman quality goes… as he speaks her name… the lurid reflections fade” (pg 106)

“I have always depended on the kindness of strangers” (pg 107)

“She sobs with inhuman abandon. There is something luxurious in her complete surrender to crying now that her sister is gone.” (pg 107)



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