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An Inspector Calls: Coursework piece - setting, character and storyline

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Tom Barnes 11MJT An Inspector Calls: Coursework piece. The settings of the play 'An Inspector Calls' was at the end of the Victorian era and at the beginning of the twentieth century, so both of the generations in the main family were brought up in a different lifestyle. Mr and Mrs Birling are the earlier generation and thus have different opinions to their young children, Sheila and Eric. Each character in the play is related in some way to the death of Eva Smith whether they deny it or not. All of this becomes apparent during a visit by an inspector, who would not take no for an answer. Mr Birling contributed by sacking a young Eva because she was one of the main factors in a strike which would have surely lost him money, he dismissed her and that was the last that he heard of her. Mrs Birling refused to give Eva help from her charity even though she was pregnant. ...read more.


'Expenses low and profits high, that's what I say'. His attitudes towards his status in the social pecking order are very important to him; he believes that if word gets out about him than he would not get the knighthood and the respect of the higher eminence. Arthur Birling is himself a pillar of society and will let nothing stand in his way even if it means the demoralization of those that he holds dear. On page 17 he threatens the inspector, 'I consider this un-called-for and officious. I've half a mind to report you.', after the inspector has placed the blame on Mr Birling, but when he realizes that the inspector feels that the others are to blames as well, he sees it as the perfect opportunity to ease the pressure off of him so that if the media were involved than he could put the blame onto the others. ...read more.


She is prepared to take any blame that is necessary in bringing justice to her death. Our generation will side with Sheila as she seems more enlightened towards the working classes and the rest of the world than her parents to, she and Eric worry about poverty and war, which would begin two years after this story was set, while her parents worry about popularity and most importantly, money. Yet you can understand the views of both of the generations and Gerald seems to be a part of both, but mainly to the older age bracket. All of these characters were a product of their era and that perhaps lets us see some understanding into their beliefs. Life at the time needed people like Sheila and needed people like Mr Birling to create a new way of life, all of these characters were brought out and understood by an Inspector named Goole. Mr Birling was a part of an era which died on November 11th 1918 along with millions of other men. ...read more.

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