Williams called the streetcar the “ideal metaphor for the human condition.” The play’s title refers not only to a real streetcar line in New Orleans but also symbolically to the power of desire as the driving force behind the characters’ actions. Blanche’s journey on Desire through Cemeteries to Elysian Fields is both literal and allegorical. Desire is a controlling force: when it takes over, characters must submit to its power, and they are carried along to the end of the line.
The Streetcar Quotes in A Streetcar Named Desire
The A Streetcar Named Desire quotes below all refer to the symbol of The Streetcar. 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: Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the New Directions edition of A Streetcar Named Desire published in 2004.).
Scene 1 Quotes
They told me to take a street-car named Desire, and transfer to one called Cemeteries, and ride six blocks and get off at—Elysian Fields!
Related Characters: Blanche DuBois (speaker)
Related Symbols: The Streetcar
Page Number and Citation:
Scene 4 Quotes