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A Streetcar Named Desire

Tennessee Williams
Quotes

Important Quotations Explained

Quotes Important Quotations Explained

Quote 5

Whoever you are—I have always depended on the kindness of strangers.

These words, which Blanche speaks to the doctor in Scene Eleven, form Blanche’s final statement in the play. She perceives the doctor as the gentleman rescuer for whom she has been waiting since arriving in New Orleans. Blanche’s final comment is ironic for two reasons. First, the doctor is not the chivalric Shep Huntleigh type of gentleman Blanche thinks he is. Second, Blanche’s dependence “on the kindness of strangers” rather than on herself is the reason why she has not fared well in life. In truth, strangers have been kind only in exchange for sex. Otherwise, strangers like Stanley, Mitch, and the people of Laurel have denied Blanche the sympathy she deserves. Blanche’s final remark indicates her total detachment from reality and her decision to see life only as she wishes to perceive it.