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An Inspector Calls is About our Responsibilities Towards Each Other Discuss.

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Introduction

An Inspector Calls is About our Responsibilities Towards Each Other Discuss The play 'An Inspector Calls' was written in 1943 but was set in 1917. This enabled Priestly to say things about the 'future'. J B Priestly wrote this play as he saw an urgent need for social change and used the play to express his desire for social equality. This play makes us aware of what has happened and learn from mistakes made. Priestly hoped his play would give society the chance with hindsight to look back on the past and not just carry on life in the same way as before. Priestly took full advantage of writing in hindsight and makes sure that it will make the audience realise how wrong they may have been in assuming future events. The play is set in an industrial city in the Midlands of 1917 and concerns a wealthy industrial Arthur Birling, his family, his daughter's fianc� Gerald Croft and an Inspector. It shows how the family each help to destroy a young woman's life-Eva Smith through their selfish and callous attitudes which results in her death. The play runs parallel to what was happening to society at the time. Each uncaring action or statement is backed up with ensuing consequences. ...read more.

Middle

She bitterly resents what she did as well promising that "I'll never, never do it again". This makes you feel less anger for Sheila who now feels immense guilt and has now been punished severely simply by knowing the implications her temper and jealousy had. Sheila was undoubtedly partly responsible but she has the decency to admit this. Unlike her father, Mr. Birling, she regrets her actions and feels immense guilt. Thirdly, Gerald is also partly responsible for Eva's death because he rejected her. Gerald first met Daisy in a bar at the theatre. He saw Alderman Meggarty harassing her and went to her rescue. He took her for a drink and a meal because he pitied her and he learnt she was desperate and so let her use his friend's rooms. She then became his mistress and they were together for the whole summer of 1911. He finished with her and cast her aside because of his relationship with Sheila Birling. Although he was probably fond of Daisy, there was never going to be any future in the relationship because of the class differences. Gerald was the son of Lord and Lady Croft and would be expected to marry someone of similar social standing. This was more important in the early 1900's. ...read more.

Conclusion

The play promotes a healthy society in which, people all realise they share a responsibility to look after each other. This is clearly visible through the events of the play. Eva Smith died as a result of the selfish mentality of the Birlings. I believe this mentality was shared by the majority of the society at the time and Priestly attempted to change that. The inspector guides the audience through the play a reveals how people were responsible of the death of Eva Smith. This also makes the audience realise even though what they did didn't seem too bad at the start, it can lead to a tragic death. In conclusion, this play makes a very important statement about our responsibility towards each other. This is made explicit by the inspector's speech. In this speech he mentions that that "We don't live alone, we are all members of one body." (Act three page 56 lines 23-33). This is telling the characters, but more importantly the audiences, that there are many people who are exactly the same as Eva Smith and we all share a responsibility towards each other. Also, in the play, we see that the younger generations care about Eva but the older generations do not. This is a positive thing because the younger people have learnt from the mistakes of the older generations. Wai-Sing Ma - 1 - ...read more.

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