A Streetcar Named Desire by Tennessee Williams is a play about class and gender, and how they interact in a specific time period and place, much more than it is about individual characters. The main characters embody some of the most stereotypical characteristics of all time. Stanley Kowalski - the male lead - is a working class man who uses strength to succeed in his job and his marriage. His wife, Stella, demurely accepts Stanley's verbal and physical abuse because she loves him. Their world is a perfect balance of male/ female, active/ passive, love/ fear, and rough/gentle, until Stella's sister comes to visit. Blanche is much more rounded character, but she is stereotypically a southern belle and a snob, to the point where she lies about her age and how much she drinks because it is the ladylike thing to do. The play unfolds rather fascinatingly, and it quite well written - dramatic but with enough humor to make it bearable. There are an abundance of very obvious symbols, which might tire the reader after awhile. Desire covers a lot of themes, including, as I said before, class and gender, desire and the south, which may be too much for one play, but Williams pulls it off well. The reader comes away with a good sense of the New Orleans working class after the war. A good play, but probably a better performance than read, as befits a play.