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An inspector calls is a modern reality play. Priestley wanted his audience to learn from his drama

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Introduction

An Inspector calls "An inspector calls is a modern reality play. Priestley wanted his audience to learn from his drama" Part 2 Post 1914 Drama Assignment John Boynton Priestley was born on the 13th September 1894 and was brought up in Bradford, by a middleclass family. His father was a schoolmaster and both his grandparents were mill workers; he often made visits to the mills of which his family worked and these visits gave him an insight into the exploitation that was taking place in the mills. From this came the inspiration for the famous play 'An Inspector Calls' where it is made openly known about the hardship and poverty of working class families in the early 1900's. I believe that Playwrights main intention when writing the play 'An Inspector calls' was to show and teach us how society in Edwardian times was so cruel, he tells us about the horrible suicide of a young working class girl 'Eva Smith' and how an upper class family came to play such major parts in the events leading up to her death. The play opens on the Birling family all happily gathered around their dining table celebrating the recent engagement of Sheila Birling and Gerald Croft. There was a carefree atmosphere and all was well. The Birlings appeared to be an upper class family as it was stated that they were all wearing the finest garments of the period (Act 1 page 1). Priestley was setting the scene for the play, trying to set the emphasis on the family being warm and welcoming. The characters Mr Birling and the Inspector are considerably different from one another I think that playwright's intention for this was to show a better contrast. Mr Birling is perceived to be a very pompous and greedy man whereas the inspector is open, honest and somewhat more considerate than that of the Birling's. ...read more.

Middle

Mr Birling did not like this and made this quote, "Now look here inspector, I've told you before, I don't like your tone." Mrs Birling: As we move on to Mrs Birling she too encounters a fair number of the sins, the one that she seems to exhibit the most is PRIDE there are many different examples of this: 1. (Act 2 Page 30) This was when Sheila was trying to explain to her mother that no matter how high she tries to build a defensive wall the inspector will always get the relevant information that he is searching for. The inspector agreed with Sheila and told Mrs Birling that her daughter was quite right. Mrs Birling became rather annoyed and made this quote to the inspector, "That-I consider-is a trifle impertinent, inspector!" 2. Another Prime example of Mrs Birlings Pride is (Act 2 Page 44). When the inspector is questioning Mrs Birling as to her reasoning for turning Eva Smith away when she was in sheer desperation. "I did nothing I'm ashamed of or that won't bear investigation". 3. Mrs Birling then went on to say, "Your quite wrong to suppose that I regret what I did" (Act 2 Page 47) This was the time where Mrs Birling was trying to tell the inspector that Eva Smith/Daisy Renton was telling a pack of lies to her and that she had no choice but to turn her away, to her it did not matter that she was pregnant and had no where else to go. 4.After the last quote where she was saying that the father of Eva Smiths baby should be made an example of and that his parents should be thoroughly ashamed, she finds out that it is her own son Eric that is the babies father and that he also stole money from his fathers work to help her on her way. ...read more.

Conclusion

(Act 1 Page 20). "I've often thought that it would do us all a bit of good if we sometimes tried to put ourselves in the place of these young women counting their pennies in their dingy little back bedrooms." But there is one quotation, perhaps the best in the whole play, one of which foretells tragic consequences (Act 3 Page 56) "One Eva Smith has gone, but there are millions and millions of Eva Smiths and John Smiths still left with us, with their lives, their hopes and their fears, their suffering and chances 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 for each other. And I tell you that the time will soon come when, if man will not learn this lesson then they will be taught it in blood, fire and anguish." By this the inspector is referring to the 1st world war where thousands upon thousands of innocent lives were taken due to the fact that the society of the world is so selfish, he was trying to explain to us that if we do not learn that we are all as equal as one another no matter what are social background may be, then wars will keep on happening and more innocent lives will be lost. I think that Priestley wanted us to learn that as long as we continue to be like that of Arthur Birling then it is inevitable that the wars will never cease. As long as we fail to notice all the evil and hatred going on around us it is never going to stop. He wants us to know that no matter who you are, where your from or what your social class maybe there is no person in the world worth anymore than the next and that is what we all need to realise within our own hearts. . ...read more.

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