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An Inspector Calls By J.B Priestly.

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Introduction

AN INSPECTOR CALLS BY J.B PRIESTLY The play "An Inspector Calls" was written by J.B Priestly. The play is set in 1912, but was written in the winter of 1944/19945. Many that watched "An Inspector Calls" for the first time, would have seen in their lifetime world war 1 with ten million dead, strikes by workers for better conditions and pay in the 1920's, high rates of unemployment, The Great Depression-mass unemployment 1936, the second world war, the holocaust and the atomic bomb. Therefore this play was written for the audience of that time but is also relevant to the people of today as it is still read and we can still learn about the need for Social Responsibility. The Inspector is the protagonist in the play, the play revolves around him and his investigations or accusations. There are also other ways we can see the inspector such though symbolism for example his name inspector Goole is usually spelt Goul, but he did not use this way of spelling as this means ghost which may have made him look suspicious. The inspector also comes across as a teacher as he teaches Mr Birling and the rest of the characters that they are not above everybody else and that the way you act affects people and they were also taught not to lie. ...read more.

Middle

The inspector is also very controlling he makes people wait and says they cannot leave the room until they are given his permission. He shows photographs one by one to each family member this shows that it is entirely up to him how he carries out this investigation and if he wants to show them individually then he shall. He is able to manipulate the characters and control his characters therefore this has an impact on the audience who may see themselves reflected in the characters. The inspector had pre-knowledge of the Birlings activities as he had read Eva's diary. "I've been round to the room and she'd left a letter there and a sort of diary" This quote shows how the inspector had pre-knowledge of their activities. "But you took her home again" The inspector said this to Eric which shows that he knew his actions and what took place that night. Throughput the play the inspector is very mysterious. We learn very little about his personality, he doesn't talk about himself or show what sort of person he is he just fires questions at the Birlings and in this way manipulates them. The inspector also has a photograph of the supposedly Eva Smith. ...read more.

Conclusion

So because of their selfish attitudes they needed to be taught a lesson. Priestly uses dramatic irony to great affect which helps the audience to see that Mr Birling is a bigoted, pompus snob. 'I say there isn't a chance of war. The world's developing so fast that it'll make war impossible. Priestly uses this quote to make Mr Birling look stupid in the audience's eyes as the war had already happened. Priestly may have set this play at this time because this was the time when the lower class people did not count, were not important and the upper class thought they ruled over the lower class. 'Eva Smith was one of them. She'd had a lot to say, far too much - so she had to go.' By saying this Mr Birling is implying that she's a trouble maker, has too much to say and she shouldn't be able to express her own opinions because she was considered to be lower status. Priestly has therefore used the inspector to teach the Birlings that they have to be responsible by the roles he plays these include: The role of a teacher, a god like figure, a symbol of law and order and a confessor. The inspector has many roles but his main function is to teach the audience about social responsibility and to be aware of their actions or else face the consequences. ...read more.

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