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An Inspector Calls

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How does J.B Priestley Get His Message Across in "An Inspector Calls"? J.B. Priestley is the writer of "An Inspector Calls", An Inspector Calls was not just written for the purposes of entertainment but also so that Priestley, who was a socialist, could express his feelings and views about the Welfare State. The Welfare State is a system where the government undertakes responsibility to protect the well-being of its citizens when they are ill, unemployed, elderly and in financial need. Priestley very cleverly uses a technique to get his message across to his audience. He keeps the audience entertained and he is getting his views across to them at the same time. To do this, Priestley uses a high class family, the Birling family who care about nobody but themselves and another higher class character Gerald Croft who is engaged to Sheila Birling. The plot of the play is to do with the death of a girl named Eva Smith. Eva Smith drinks disinfectant and kills herself. Priestley uses the character of Inspector Goole, to make each member of the Birling family make a personal confession about Eva Smith and convinces them that all of them had a part to play in the death of Eva Smith. Prior to the arrival of the Inspector at the home of the Birlings, Mr. ...read more.


Inspector Goole says to Sheila in Act One "And so you used the power that you had, as a daughter of a good customer and also of a man well known in town, to punish the girl just because she made you feel like that?" At first she had thought nothing of it but now, she feels genuine remorse, declaring that she will "never, never do it again to anybody". She comes to believe that they are living in an altruistic society, telling her father that "these girls aren't cheap labour - they're people". Inspector Goole moves on to Gerald Croft who is engaged to Sheila Birling, the Birling family were also celebrating the engagement until the inspector arrived. Gerald knew Eva Smith but by another name, Daisy Renton. Mr. Croft confesses to having a relationship with Daisy Renton and looking after her until they decided to split. When he confessed to this Sheila took off her engagement ring and gave it back to him angrily. Also Mr. Croft's confession shows that Daisy Renton has nowhere to go and only the money she was given by Mr. Croft to live on; another message from Priestley on why there should be a Welfare State. The next to be questioned was Mrs. Birling. She was keeping quiet at first but the Inspector's techniques made her admit she turned down Eva Smith at her charity to help people. ...read more.


J.B Priestley sent his message through every single character through the play all in a unique and entertaining method to keep the audience happy and get his message across at the same time. This play could have changed many people's views and opinions on the Welfare State into good views and good opinions. Inspector Goole's has one final speech: "But just remember this. One Eva Smith has gone - but there are millions and millions and millions of Eva Smiths and John Smiths still left with us, with their lives, their hopes and fears, their suffering and chance of happiness, all intertwined with our lives, and what we think and say and do. We don't live alone. We are members of one body. We are responsible of each other. And I tell you that the time will soon come when, if men will not learn that lesson, then they will be taught it in fire and blood and anguish. Good night." This speech sums everything up by saying everyone has to take care of each other and if that does not happen there will be a lot of people suffering and people will be having their lives ruined but if unfortunately something like this does happen to people there should at least be a Welfare State to help them survive through life. Priestley is warning the audience of the wars, he is in a way predicting them, even though they have already lived through them. Ahsan Malik ...read more.

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