The worlds in each text are affected by the arrival of an outsider. Compare the ways in which these outsiders can be said to be catalysts.
The arrival of “the outsider” causes disruption in their friend’s and family’s lives and their sudden arrival is unwelcome by the other characters. They are left outsiders due to their physical, financial or mental state. Their unusual ideas leave them isolated and ostracized from society which forces them into living in their own fantasies.
The appearance of the outsider is shocking, the other characters are not aware of their arrival and question whether they should accept their arrival or not. Blanche’s sudden visit Stella was unexpected and Blanche arrives when Stella isn’t present at her home, this exemplifies the lack of communication between the two sisters. Eunice asks Blanche “she wasn’t expecting you?” which highlights her understanding of the situation, she is aware that Stella was not told and as Blance then confirms “No, no, not tonight.” The use of the words “not tonight” implies that she possibly did notify Stella about her visit. Stella’s ignorance to the situation will have a great impact upon her as she hasn’t spoken to her sister for years. Blanche has ultimately entered her sister’s home without permission or acceptance to her stay; this is supported by Vlasopolos’s idea that “her position in her sister’s household becomes increasingly defined as that of an intruder”. (Vlasopolos, A. 1986). Similarly within Enduring Love, Jed’s first phone call to Joe left him in an uncomfortable. They had very little communication but left Joe in the state of distress, and denial of the situation as he says to Clarissa, “it was nothing. Wrong number, go to sleep!” in his mind Joe sees it as a miscommunication but in reality it is the opposite. He tries to ignore this encounter with Jed and continue his life as if nothing had happened by telling Clarissa to “go to sleep” however later regrets that exact moment as it then lead to the destruction of his relationship with Clarissa and his mental state.
Both the “outsiders” have different attitudes compared to society in the context of the novel/play and their bizarre actions leave the other character disturbed and uncomfortable around them. Stella hesitates to introduce Stanley’s friends to Blanche because of her Southern Belle ideology and mentality as she tells Blanche “I’m afraid you won’t think they are lovely”, Blanche has been brought up in Belle Reve which is completely different to New Orleans and especially where Stella lives. Blanche has set standards and ideas for the people around her and expects them to behave accordingly around her, of not she is left in a state of shock and confusion as she chooses to blind herself by the illusions she keeps herself satisfied within. Jed’s actions break the norms of society and mentally affect Joes ways of thinking and handling situations, his “mental state was frail” after thinking that Jed was possibly trailing him. It is natural human instinct to be afraid of the unknown who Joe is in this situation; he is unsure whether Jed is actually trailing him or if he is just paranoid after the phone call. Wilsons’s idea of the outsider defines their actions, “the outsider is not sure who he is. He has found an ‘I’ but it is not his true ‘I’. His main business is to find his way back to himself”.
Both outsiders are unable to accept reality, they believe what they want to believe and choose to ignore what others try to tell them even if it is for their own good. Blanche explicitly refuses to accept the reality; she is too caught up in her own world of illusion that she doesn’t see or hear anything else that opposes it as she tells Mitch “I don’t want realism” after all the incidents that had taken place in her past she refuses to accept reality. She is completely consumed by the thought of being the “perfect” woman. Blanche