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An inspector calls

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AN INSPECTOR CALLS Farha Khan BY J.B PRIESTLEY In Act one of 'An inspector calls' how does J.B Priestley use dramatic devices to convey his concerns and ideas to the members of the audience, as well as engage and involve them in his play? 'An Inspector calls' was written by J.B Priestley he was a man who was very concerned about the consequences of social inequality, he also believed a great deal in socialism and believed that many other people needed to be more caring about their community and the people in it. Priestley uses the character of the Inspector to convey his own thoughts, feelings and opinions about social issues. However, he also uses other characters, particularly Mr.Birling, to show the audience how cynical some people can be. J.B Priestley wrote the play in 1945 but it was set in 1912. At the time the play was set, the world was a very class conscience place with higher and lower class depending on money. Mr Birling is a pretty rich businessman who thinks very highly of himself, Birling's family respect him evidence to this is the seating order at the dinner table Mr Birling is sat at the head of the table, showing that he is the dominant figure in the family. ...read more.


Priestley presents the character of Sheila in such a way that we sympathise with her more than her father. Mr Birling and Sheila react differently as she is morally sound than her father, she points out that 'these girls are no cheap labour they're people' this clearly shows her views are not similar to her fathers. Later on when she realises that she has also played a part in Eva's death she is distressed and admits she is wrong 'so I'm really responsible?' Sheila is very regretful and learns from her mistakes she immediately becomes more likeable and seems less at fault. Whereas Mr Birling is not willing to take any responsibility towards others 'A man should look out for himself, and his family if he has one' or even Eva's death. He represents the older people, perhaps Priestley is implying that he believes older people are less likely to change their views, as they're more set in their ways than younger generations. The setting of the scene in Act one when the inspector comes is a very detailed naturalstic setting. The family are celebrating a special occasion and are pleased with themselves. The inspector causes major tension in the house and changes the mood of the scene. ...read more.


The audience feel shock, regret and guilt for the Birling family who have in some way or another been responsible for a girls death. Knowingly and some unknowingly they made mistakes however the younger generation seem to learn frm their mistakes whereas the older generation just deny any responisiblity and regret nothing. Priestley also emphasises the difference between the upper and lower classes very strongly throughout the play. He uses the Birling family as a representative of the Upper Class and Eva Smith as a representative of the Lower Class. Priestley shows how in 1912, Upper Class citizens, such as the Birling's had no respect for Lower Class citizens. He uses this class divide to convey his message and to show that the rigidity of the class system is incompatible with his views on community and responsibility. We are taught the moral values of life and the beliefs and motivations of Priestley serve as a message for social change, in the end the audience is conscious of the advantages of Socialism over Capitalism. At the end of Act 1 we know that there is a lot be revealed yet and there is a big mystery behind the death of Eva Smith's death. Sheila realises the motive behind the inspector calling however Mr Birling doesn't or rather he doesn't want to 'there's nothing mysterious- or scandalous about this business.' ...read more.

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