Choose one of the following topics.
1. Provide a brief definition that includes at least three identifying traits of a tragic figure then apply that definition to argue for or against the following statement:
Stanley Kowalski and not Blanche Dubois is the real tragic figure ofA Streetcar Named Desire.
2. Discuss the similarities and differences between any one of the following pairs of characters:
Stella and Rose
Stanley and Troy
Blanche and Gabriel
Cory (Fences) and Sonny (Sonny’s Blues)
Troy and the narrator of Sonny’s Blues
3. Discuss the following statement:
The tragedy of Troy Maxson inFencesis one that exemplifies the tragedy of American society.
4. Discuss the following statement:
The Southern Gothic elements ofA Streetcar Named Desireprevent the play from achieving the effects of a classical tragedy. In other words because of the grotesque qualities that Tennessee Williams has given to Stanley and Blanche we can never see them as real people. Rather they serve as symbols and archtypes as personalities so extreme that they lose the ability to create ‘a catharsis of terror and pity.’