Explain how things are awkward between Mitch and Blanche at the start of scene 6 (Tennessee Williams' A Streetcar Named Desire)?

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literaturenerd | High School Teacher | (Level 2) Educator Emeritus

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In scene six, of Tennessee Williams' A Streetcar Named Desire, Mitch and Blanche are returning from an amusement park close to Lake Pontchartrain. The scene directions state that Blanche is exhausted, and Mitch is depressed. It is apparent that the night did not go well. 

Things seem awkward between the pair. Mitch "laughs uneasily" numerous times, and Blanche makes excuses about her not giving Mitch enough "entertainment" (as is the job of the lady). The stage directions notating shuffling, nervous coughs, and awkward stances all add to the defined nature of the scene. 

The awkwardness seems to come from both Blanche's understanding of "entertaining" and Mitch's lack of understanding of appropriate conversation and actions. When Blanche attempts to seduce Mitch, he seems relatively oblivious to her advances. Instead of understanding the nature of adult relationships, Mitch responds by stating that he does not wish to remove his shirt because of over-perspiring. His innocent nature proves awkward when set against Blanche's obvious "education." 

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