Tennessee Williams


Blanche meets Stanley in A Streetcar Named Desire

Tennessee Williams died on this date in 1983 (born 1911).

Frye in The Educated Imagination cites Williams in his account of recurring archetypes in popular literature:

You notice that popular literature, the kind of stories that are read for relaxation, is always very highly conventionalized.  If you pick up a detective story, you may not know until the last page who done it, but you always know before you start reading exactly the kind of thing that’s going to happen.  If you read the fiction in women’s magazines, you read the story of Cinderella over and over again.  If you read Westerns, you’re reading a development of the pastoral convention, which turns up in writers of all ages, including Shakespeare.  It’s the same with characterization.  The tricky or boastful gods of ancient myths and primitive folk tales are characters of the same kind that turn up in Faulkner or Tennessee Williams. (CW 21, 449)

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