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A Streetcar Named Desire

A Streetcar Named Desire


by Tennessee Williams

Stella Kowalski Timeline and Summary

  • Stella laughs with the other women at Stanley’s meat; then she heads to the bowling alley to watch him bowl.
  • She returns home to greet her sister, who notices that Stella is now plump. She gets Blanche a drink.
  • Stella is shocked to learn that Belle Reve, the family plantation, is lost. She's taken aback when Blanche accuses her of leaving the mess behind. She goes to the bathroom to wash her face.
  • While Blanche is in the bathroom, Stella explains to her husband about Belle Reve. He claims they’ve been swindled, though Stella tells him he’s being ridiculous.
  • She goes out on the porch but runs back in when she hears Stanley yelling at Blanche. Blanche sends her away to get a coke from the store.
  • Stella brings Blanche back from dinner and finds the men still up drinking and playing poker. In the bedroom she converses with Blanche about Mitch and Stanley.
  • Stanley gets angry at all the noise and hits Stella, who runs upstairs to the neighbor's with Blanche.
  • Later, Stella hears her husband begging her to come back to him and goes back downstairs to spend the night with him.
  • The next morning, Stella is practically glowing when Blanche finds her in bed. She explains that she kind of likes Stanley’s aggressive streak, as it's exciting to her.
  • She listens to Blanche insult Stanley as “sub-human” and “primitive.” But when Stanley returns, she embraces him fiercely in full view of her sister.
  • When Blanche is nervous about her reputation and what Stanley knows, Stella tries to calm her down. She brings her a coke, but Blanche has a fit when it foams over on her skirt.
  • They discuss Mitch. Stella concludes that Blanche will be able to marry him if that’s what she really wants. Stella exits to go meet her husband at the Four Deuces.
  • Stella has decked out the apartment for Blanche’s birthday. While her sister is in the bathroom, Stanley gives her the lowdown on Blanche’s recent past. Stella doesn’t want to believe it.
  • The three of them sit around uncomfortably at the birthday dinner, since Mitch never shows up. Stella is angry with her husband for being rude to Blanche, and tells him to wash his greasy fingers and help her clear the table.
  • Stanley doesn’t take direction well; he smashes his plate and tells Stella never to speak to him like that again.
  • Stella yells at him for treating Blanche so cruelly. He tries to tell her that as soon as Blanche is gone, things will be good again, but Stella interrupts and asks him to take her to the hospital.
  • After the baby has been born, Stella is helping Blanche to pack to go away. She feels guilty about sending her sister off to an asylum (or some place similar). She admits to Eunice that she doesn’t know what else to do, and that she can’t believe Blanche’s story about Stanley and go on living with her husband.
  • Stella grows more upset when the asylum Matron arrives and tries to restrain Blanche physically. As her sister is taken away, Stella calls after her.
  • Stanley comes out onto the porch to comfort his wife and child.