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A critical evaluation of J.B. Priestly's 'An Inspector Calls.'

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Critical Evaluation A young girl dies and a whole family is responsible. The family are interrogated, and one by one the mysterious Inspector Goole makes them admit to what they have done, but Inspector Goole may not be all that he seems... J.B. Priestly tells of this interesting sequence of events in his play, 'An Inspector Calls.' He brings back to life the cruel Edwardian world in which children are brought up to spend their lives in factories; a world in which people are born solely for the purpose of keeping business men rich. In this essay I will identify whom I think is most responsible for the death of a young girl called Eva Smith. The family, which allegedly kills Eva, are the Birling family. They are a rich upper class family who are blind to the poverty of their employees. There are five members of the Birling family. Arthur Birling is the head of the family and owns a large factory. He is very pleased with life in general but is blind to the troubles of the world around him. Arthur is intent on bringing up his son Eric to follow in his footsteps but is having difficulty in doing this. Eric is the youngest in the family who has not yet reached 20. ...read more.


Gerald notices this and quickly moves to help Eva. He takes her to a hotel where they share a meal together and get to know one another. Finding out that she has nowhere to live he rents a room in the hotel and starts getting to know Eva very well. Too well in fact, Gerald falls in love with Eva and they become involved in a close relationship behind Sheila's back. This helps Eva mentally and makes her very happy. Unfortunately this happiness doesn't last long. They split up soon afterwards and Eva falls into a deep depression that ends up in her suicide. Even so, Gerald helps Eva get back on her feet by giving her money and mental help. Gerald was the only person who did everything in his power to help Eva. Arthur's daughter Sheila is a hotheaded young woman who has been spoilt since she was a baby. Sheila visits an expensive dress shop to buy something to wear for a party. This just happens to be the shop that Eva has found a job at. Eva is thrilled at being able to work in such a nice place and she is feeling very happy. This isn't to last either. When Eva helps Sheila try on a dress Eva sees the dress doesn't suit Sheila so she smiles. ...read more.


Eric makes Eva pregnant even though Eva didn't want to sleep with him in the first place. When he realizes what he has done he tries to help Eva by giving him money. This money was stolen from his father and Eva soon finds out making her even more unhappy. Eva refuses to accept the money which shows great character on her behalf. Eric makes Eva pregnant and on top of this depresses her by stealing money. This is too much for Eva to bear. She could barely survive herself and supporting a baby would mean she couldn't work. Eva eventually committed suicide bringing to an end the tragic sequence of events all brought on by one family. Being sacked by Arthur, being unfairly forced out of her job by Sheila. Being refused help by Sybil not to mention being made pregnant by Eric. These four event coupled with being her heart being broken by Gerald shows how peoples actions can change the course of others lives. People have a tremendous power, the power to change the world as we know it. The right or wrong actions at the right or wrong times can lead to people losing their lives or making their fortunes. Sometimes, people don't think about the consequences of their actions and this is when things can go wrong. This play shows one example. It shows how five people can end someone's life. It shows how people can be judged simply by how much money they have. ...read more.

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