25 Best Blanche DuBois Quotes From Tennessee Williams' A Streetcar Named Desire

Devangana Rathore
Dec 12, 2023 By Devangana Rathore
Originally Published on Feb 23, 2021
Edited by Monisha Kochhar
Postage stamp printed in USA showing an image of the Broadway play A Streetcar Named Desire by Tennessee Williams, circa 1999.

Forever lost in her own world and looking for a place in the real one, Blanche Dubois is one of the most interesting characters in modern literature.

'A Streetcar Named Desire' is a play written by Tennessee Williams - working around the life of Blanche Dubois - a neurotic woman. If you think you enjoy reading about Blanche, then why not take a look at 'A Streetcar Named Desire' quotes and Tennessee Williams quotes?

Best Blanche Dubois Quotes

Unable to deal with the reality of her world, she is constantly wandering about, basing her self-worth on the men around her.

Blanche Dubois's husband kills himself after his wife discovers him cheating, and we see her flirting with her sister's husband - Stanley Kowalski - in the play. Her desire was to find acceptance and love in a world that had none to spare for her.

She needed help accepting her reality - and some of the best Blanche Dubois sayings do a great job highlighting her obsession with men and a fantasy world.

1. “I'll tell you what I want. Magic! Yes, yes, magic! I try to give that to people. I misinterpret things to them. I don't tell the truth. I tell what ought to be truth. And if that is sinful, then let me be damned for it! - Don't turn the light on!”

-Blanche Dubois, 'A Streetcar Named Desire.'

2. "I thought you would never come back to this horrible place! What am I saying? I didn’t mean to say that. I meant to be nice about it and say—Oh, what a convenient location and such—Ha-a-ha!"

-Blanche Dubois, 'A Streetcar Named Desire.'

3. "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!"

-Blanche Dubois, 'A Streetcar Named Desire.'

4. “Don't—don't hang back with the brutes!”

-Blanche Dubois, 'A Streetcar Named Desire.'

5. "When your sister first met me she thought I was common, well I'm common alright, common as dirt."

-Blanche Dubois, 'A Streetcar Named Desire.'

6. "And in the spring, it's touching to notice them making their first discovery of love! As if nobody had ever known it before!”

-Blanche Dubois, 'A Streetcar Named Desire.'

7. "Straight? What's 'straight'? A line can be straight, or a street. But the heart of a human being?"  

-Blanche Dubois, 'A Streetcar Named Desire.'        

8. "Funerals are pretty compared to deaths."

-Blanche Dubois, 'A Streetcar Named Desire.'

Blanche Dubois Quotes On Life

Young girl in a field

One of her most iconic quotes is one where she says she has always depended on the kindness of strangers. Combined with her appearance and manner, she symbolizes the epitome of femininity.

Even her name - Blanche, meaning white, is an allusion to her purity at the start of the play. Growing up on Belle Reve - meaning beautiful dream - the thread of Blanche and hallucinations goes on scene after scene.

Her sister Stella tries to get help, and a doctor gets involved, but no matter what Stella and others do, it seems neigh impossible to help. You can study these Blanche Dubois quotes to see how she saw life and love.

9. "Blanche: Oh, Stanley! What sign were you born under?

Stanley Kowalski: What sign?

Blanche: Astrological sign. I'll bet you were born under Aries. Aries people are forceful, dynamic, they dote on noise. They love to bang things around.

Stella: Stanley was born just five minutes after Christmas.

Blanche: Capricorn - the goat!"

-'A Streetcar Named Desire'.

10. "I can smell the sea air. The rest of my time I’m going to spend on the sea. And when I die, I’m going to die on the sea. You know what I will die of? I shall die of eating an unwashed grape one day out on the ocean."

-Blanche Dubois, 'A Streetcar Named Desire.'

11. "Well, I never did care for wishy-washy people. That was why when you walked in last night, I said to myself, 'my sister has married a man'. Of course, that was all I could hope to."

-Blanche Dubois, 'A Streetcar Named Desire.'

12. "I know I fib a good deal. After all, a woman's charm is fifty percent illusion."

-Blanche Dubois, 'A Streetcar Named Desire.'

13. "Sometimes there is a God."

-Blanche Dubois, 'A Streetcar Named Desire.'

14. "Deliberate cruelty is unforgivable, and the one thing of which I have never, ever been guilty of."

-Blanche Dubois, 'A Streetcar Named Desire.'

15. "What you are talking about is brutal desire–just–Desire!–the name of that rattle-trap street-car that bangs through the Quarter."

-Blanche Dubois, 'A Streetcar Named Desire.'

16. "I bought some nice clothes to meet all your lovely friends in. Well... I'm afraid you won't think they're lovely. Well, anyway, I bought nice clothes and I'll wear them. I guess you're hoping I'll say I'll put up at a hotel.

I'm not going to put up at a hotel. I've got to be near you, Stella. I've got to be with people. I can't be alone because... Because as you must have noticed, I... I'm not very well."

-Blanche Dubois, 'A Streetcar Named Desire.'

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

-Blanche Dubois, 'A Streetcar Named Desire.'

Blanche Dubois Quotes With Stella And Stanley Kowalski

Stella and Stanley Kowalski are the two people who engage with Blanche the most. A supporting character - Mitch, also speaks, but Mitch is not nearly as involved as Stella and Stanley.

This Tennesse Williams play has been adapted into many movies, TV Shows, and play adaptations. Many people try to study the play and come up with their own interpretations - and the best way you can do it too is to read the following quotes about Blanche Dubois and her interactions with Stella and Stanley.

18. "Young man! Young, young, young man! Has anyone ever told you that you look like a young Prince out of the Arabian Nights?"

-Blanche Dubois, 'A Streetcar Named Desire.'

19. "Oh, in my youth I excited some admiration. But look at me now! Would you think it possible that I was once considered to be—attractive?"

-Blanche Dubois, 'A Streetcar Named Desire.'

20. “I can't stand a naked light bulb, any more than I can a rude remark or a vulgar action."

-Blanche Dubois, 'A Streetcar Named Desire.'

21. "I don't want realism. I want magic! Yes, yes, magic. I try to give that to people. I do misrepresent things. I don't tell truths. I tell what ought to be the truth."

-Blanche Dubois, 'A Streetcar Named Desire.'

22. "May I speak plainly?... If you'll forgive me, he's common... He's like an animal.

He has an animal's habits. There's even something subhuman about him. Thousands of years have passed him right by, and there he is. Stanley Kowalski, the survivor of the Stone Age, bearing the raw meat home from the kill in the jungle.

And you - you here waiting for him. Maybe he'll strike you or maybe grunt and kiss you, that's if kisses have been discovered yet. His poker night you call it. This party of apes."

-Blanche Dubois, 'A Streetcar Named Desire.'

23. "Oh look, we have created enchantment."

-Blanche Dubois, 'A Streetcar Named Desire.'

24. "Death is expensive, Miss Stella. And I, with my pitiful salary at the school... Yes, accuse me. Stand there and stare at me, thinking I let the place go. I let the place go? Where were you? In there with your Polack."

-Blanche Dubois, 'A Streetcar Named Desire.'

25. "Blanche: Tell us a funny story, Stanley, something to help us out.

Stanley Kowalski: I didn't think you like my stories Blanche

Blanche: I like them when there amusing but not indecent.

Stanley Kowalski: I don't know any refine enough for your taste."  

-'A Streetcar Named Desire'.                                                  

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly quotes for everyone to enjoy! If you liked our suggestions for Blanche DuBois quotes then why not take a look at [Scarlett O'Hara quotes], or Daisy Buchanan quotes.                          

Main image credit: catwalker / Shutterstock.com

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Written by Devangana Rathore

Bachelor of Arts specializing in English Language, Master of Philosophy

Devangana Rathore picture

Devangana RathoreBachelor of Arts specializing in English Language, Master of Philosophy

Devangana is a highly accomplished content writer and a deep thinker with a Master's degree in Philosophy from Trinity College, Dublin. With a wealth of experience in copywriting, she has worked with The Career Coach in Dublin and is constantly looking to enhance her skills through online courses from some of the world's leading universities. Devangana has a strong background in computer science and is also an accomplished editor and social media manager. Her leadership skills were honed during her time as the literacy society president and student president at the University of Delhi.

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