A Streetcar Named Desire

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Harold Mitchell (Mitch) Character Analysis

The “gentleman” of Stanley’s poker-playing friends. Much more genteel and mannered than the animalistic Stanley, though still a man with physical desires. He and Blanche develop a relationship, but Blanche pretends to be much more naïve and innocent than she actually is, and Mitch is ultimately driven away when he learns of her sordid recent past.

Harold Mitchell (Mitch) Quotes in A Streetcar Named Desire

The A Streetcar Named Desire quotes below are all either spoken by Harold Mitchell (Mitch) or refer to Harold Mitchell (Mitch). For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Sexual Desire Theme Icon
). Note: all page and citation info for the quotes below refers to the New Directions edition of A Streetcar Named Desire published in 2004.
Scene 9 Quotes

I told you already I don’t want none of his liquor and I mean it. You ought to lay off his liquor. He says you’ve been lapping it up all summer like a wild-cat!

Related Characters: Harold Mitchell (Mitch) (speaker), Blanche DuBois, Stanley Kowalski
Related Symbols: Alcohol and Drunkenness
Page Number: 143
Explanation and Analysis:

Throughout the play, metaphors of beasts and animality are used throughout the play to refer to physical lust and raw sexuality. Blanche calls Stanley a “brute” and a “beast.” The stage directions refer to Stanley as a rooster preening among female hens. Here, Mitch’s use of the term “wildcat” for Blanche foreshadows Stanley’s outcry later in the play, when Stanley calls Blanche a “tiger” just before raping her. Calling Blanche a “wildcat” also symbolically pulls Blanche from the realm of magic into the physical world.

Mitch also proudly differentiates himself from Stanley in this exclamation. Stanley is the alpha male throughout the entire play. However, in this outburst, Mitch declares himself to be self-sufficient, and therefore, by implication, a sexual partner worthy of Blanche’s attention on his own terms. Blanche treats Mitch as a sympathetic and gentle character, but in this outburst, Mitch tries to reclaim some of the sexual energy that Stanley exudes.

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Harold Mitchell (Mitch) Character Timeline in A Streetcar Named Desire

The timeline below shows where the character Harold Mitchell (Mitch) appears in A Streetcar Named Desire. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Scene 1
Sexual Desire Theme Icon
Masculinity and Physicality Theme Icon
Femininity and Dependence Theme Icon
Eunice and a Negro Woman are sitting on the front stoop when Stanley and Mitch come around the corner. Stanley bellows for Stella, and when she comes out on the... (full context)
Scene 3
Sexual Desire Theme Icon
Fantasy and Delusion Theme Icon
Interior and Exterior Appearance Theme Icon
Masculinity and Physicality Theme Icon
...are eating watermelon and drinking whiskey. The men deal out yet another hand of poker. Mitch worries that he should get home to his sick mother, and he rises and goes... (full context)
Sexual Desire Theme Icon
Fantasy and Delusion Theme Icon
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Femininity and Dependence Theme Icon
Blanche is about to take a bath when Mitch emerges from the bathroom. Mitch is sheepish and awkward, and Blanche looks at him with... (full context)
Sexual Desire Theme Icon
Interior and Exterior Appearance Theme Icon
...turns on the radio, but Stanley turns it off and stalks back to the game. Mitch skips the next hand to go to the bathroom again, but Stella is in there,... (full context)
Sexual Desire Theme Icon
Interior and Exterior Appearance Theme Icon
Femininity and Dependence Theme Icon
Blanche and Mitch discuss his sick mother, and as they smoke Mitch’s cigarettes, Blanche reads the inscription on... (full context)
Sexual Desire Theme Icon
Interior and Exterior Appearance Theme Icon
Masculinity and Physicality Theme Icon
Femininity and Dependence Theme Icon
...Stella comes out of the bathroom, Blanche turns the radio back on, and she and Mitch clumsily begin to dance. Stanley leaps from the table and throws the radio out the... (full context)
Sexual Desire Theme Icon
Interior and Exterior Appearance Theme Icon
Masculinity and Physicality Theme Icon
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Blanche rushes downstairs, confused and frantic. Mitch appears and tells her not to worry, that this is just the nature of Stanley... (full context)
Scene 5
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Interior and Exterior Appearance Theme Icon
Femininity and Dependence Theme Icon
...overreacted to the stain, and Blanche claims that she is nervous about her relationship with Mitch––they are going on another date tonight. She has not been honest with him about her... (full context)
Sexual Desire Theme Icon
Fantasy and Delusion Theme Icon
Interior and Exterior Appearance Theme Icon
Femininity and Dependence Theme Icon
As Blanche waits for Mitch, a Young Man arrives, collecting subscriptions for the Evening Star newspaper. Blanche flirts with the... (full context)
Scene 6
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It is two o’clock in the morning. Blanche and Mitch have just returned from an amusement park. Blanche is clearly exhausted, and both are strained.... (full context)
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Blanche invites Mitch in for a night-cap. She lights candles and suggests that they pretend to be Bohemians... (full context)
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Mitch lifts Blanche up, declaring her “light as a feather,” and, while his hands are around... (full context)
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Fantasy and Delusion Theme Icon
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Masculinity and Physicality Theme Icon
Femininity and Dependence Theme Icon
When Mitch asks where Stanley and Stella are, Blanche explains that they are out with Eunice and... (full context)
Sexual Desire Theme Icon
Fantasy and Delusion Theme Icon
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Femininity and Dependence Theme Icon
Blanche launches into a somewhat hysterical rant against Stanley, and also bemoans her impoverished state. Mitch interrupts to ask how old she is. Blanche asks why he wants to know, and... (full context)
Sexual Desire Theme Icon
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Blanche says she understands about being lonely. She tells Mitch about her first husband: she married him while they were both very young, and though... (full context)
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Mitch approaches her and embraces her, saying that they both need someone. As they kiss, Blanche... (full context)
Scene 7
Fantasy and Delusion Theme Icon
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...Stella begins poking candles into the birthday cake, saying that she will stop at twenty-five. Mitch has been invited, she says, but Stanley tells her not to expect Mitch, claiming that... (full context)
Scene 8
Sexual Desire Theme Icon
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Masculinity and Physicality Theme Icon
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...the dismal birthday supper. There is an empty fourth place at the table, meant for Mitch who did not show. Blanche tells a lame joke about a parrot and a priest,... (full context)
Sexual Desire Theme Icon
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Blanche rushes to the phone to call Mitch, even though Stella tells her not to. Stella goes out to Stanley on the porch,... (full context)
Sexual Desire Theme Icon
Fantasy and Delusion Theme Icon
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Masculinity and Physicality Theme Icon
...candles on Blanche’s birthday cake. Blanche and Stanley join her. Blanche reproaches herself for calling Mitch. Stanley complains about the heat from Blanche’s bath, and she retorts that a “healthy Polack”... (full context)
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Fantasy and Delusion Theme Icon
The telephone rings, and Blanche expects that it is Mitch, but it is one of Stanley’s friends. When Stanley returns, he tells Blanche that he... (full context)
Scene 9
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Mitch, unshaven and disheveled, rings the doorbell. The polka stops. Blanche hurriedly puts on powder and... (full context)
Sexual Desire Theme Icon
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Masculinity and Physicality Theme Icon
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Mitch asks Blanche to turn off the fan. She offers him a drink. Mitch says that... (full context)
Sexual Desire Theme Icon
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...liquor bottle in the closet and pretends that she doesn’t know what Southern Comfort is. Mitch again refuses a drink, saying that Stanley says she has been drinking his liquor all... (full context)
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Blanche asks Mitch what’s on his mind. Mitch says that he’s never seen Blanche in the daytime or... (full context)
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Mitch stares Blanche in the face. He says that he doesn’t mind her being older than... (full context)
Sexual Desire Theme Icon
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...that she didn’t know what she was doing and that she acted out of panic. Mitch, she says, was the first man who gave her hope. After a pause, Mitch says... (full context)
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Mitch begins to embrace Blanche, but Blanche insists that he marry her first. Mitch drops his... (full context)
Scene 10
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It is still later that night. Blanche has been drinking steadily since Mitch left. She has dressed herself in a white satin gown and her rhinestone tiara. She... (full context)
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Blanche claims that Mitch had arrived that night with roses to beg her forgiveness. Stanley asks if Mitch came... (full context)
Scene 11
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Upon hearing Blanche’s voice, Mitch’s face and arms sag, and he lapses into a daydream. Stanley yells at him to... (full context)
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...poker game, but Stella goes with her. As Blanche crosses through and the men (except Mitch) stand awkwardly, Blanche says, “Please don’t get up. I’m only passing through.” (full context)
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While Stella and Eunice are speaking on the porch, Mitch has started toward the bedroom, but Stanley blocks him from entering, shoving him away. Mitch... (full context)