• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

An Inspector Calls By J.B Priestly.

Extracts from this document...


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.


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.


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.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE J.B. Priestley section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE J.B. Priestley essays

  1. An Inspector Calls, by J.B. Priestly, an overview

    He appears to be slowly learning his lesson but is getting very angry as he sees that all he believes in is wrong. As he discovers the revelations about Eric's theft of the money he becomes more and more desperate, and just before the Inspector's departure he says he will give "thousands" to keep the story quiet.

  2. An Inspector Calls, by J.B. Priestly

    Eric points out that "it isn't if you can't work somewhere elseo. As the Inspector's interviews with the other characters Birling becomes more and more agitated and stage directions to describe his mood such as "bothered, angrily and sharplyo show that he is not in a good frame of mind.

  1. How does J.B Priestly explore the issues of social responsibility on 'An Inspector Calls'?

    He strongly believes that 'a man has to make his own way' and does not care who he crushes in the process, not considering the harm he may do as a result of this sort of attitude. He certainly seems like a hardheaded businessman.

  2. An Inspector Calls by J.B Priestly

    her fault, he just wants to help her ' And if she leaves us now and doesn't hear anymore then she will fear she is entirely to blame'. The inspector doesn't want her to feel any blame on Eva's death, he just wants her to realize she had an impact

  1. Examine the function and symbolism of the Inspector

    Mrs Birling immediately believes herself to be untouchable and not responsible for any of her actions. She is prejudiced against the inspector and believes herself to be better than him. She, like Mr Birling, accepts no responsibility for the young girls death.

  2. An Inspector Calls, by J.B Priestly.

    The moral code of the time was that ladies were supposed to remain chaste and pure until they married. According to a double standard of morality, respectable women had to be chaste but respectable men did not, but sex was supposed to be only with working class girls, mainly through

  1. Analyse the character of the inspector in An Inspector Calls by J.B Priestly

    but the girl died in agony, hating life." He is abrupt and harsh about the death. This shows his unpleasant side. In act 2 he continues to use his moralizing tone and inappropriate questions. For instance, "and you think young women ought to be protected against unpleasant and disturbing things?"

  2. The criminal play J.B. Priestley´s "An Inspector Calls".

    but about a public scandal and it�s consequences for his public image. A scandal would mean an extraordinary danger for his imminent knightship , that would rise him or higher to the social status of his wife and equal to the social status of his son-in-law�s family Croft.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work