How does Tennessee Williams present the conflict between old and new in Scene 2 of A Streetcar Named Desire?     

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teachertaylor eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Tennessee Williams presents the conflict between old and new in Scene 2 of A Streetcar Named Desire by positing Blanche's trunk between Blanche and Stanley.  Stanley cannot understand why someone needs the things that Blanche has in the trunk--the fancy dresses and other clothing seem pointless to him.  Further, Stanley wants to know where Blanche has gotten so much money to buy the pearls and other jewels that are in the trunk.  Stanley, the symbol of the new, works to support himself and his wife, while Blanche, the symbol of the old, no longer works in her former profession as a teacher.  This brings up an argument over the fate of Belle Reve, the property that was left to Blanche and Stella.  Blanche claims that the property has been lost, and Stanley wants his and Stella's share of the money.  Stanley claims: "The Kowalskis and the DuBoises have different notions"--a clear statement showing the conflict between the two.

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A Streetcar Named Desire

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