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An inspector calls - summary

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GCSE ENGLISH LITERATURE COURSEWORK AN INSPECTOR CALLS An inspector calls is a play about a very mysterious inspector who is investigating the suicide of a young woman, Eva Smith/ Daisy Renton. This mysterious inspector, Inspector Goole, while investigating, puts pressure on the Birling family, a middle classed family, to reveal the truth about this young woman. It turns out that every member of the Birling family has a secret to connect them to this woman's death. This play, 'An Inspector Calls,' was written in 1945, during World War Two. J.B.Priestley, who is the author of this play, set this play deliberately in 1912. This was just before the sinking of the Titanic and World War One. He set this play in 1912, as the audience would have had an insight of the background. The main message of this play is of social responsibility. Many times during the play characters from the Birling family acted in such a manner that it hurt other people. In this case it ended up with the killing of a person whose live was a struggle. This play also portrays that the control you have over your own behaviour can get out of hand and could end up injuring or even killing an individual. The character I believe who changes most in the play is Shelia Birling. ...read more.


He made people tell him the truth about their version of the story of Eva and made them feel sad. By the end of the play he only made an impact on two people and not all five. Eva/Daisy symbolised the exploited working classes. I mention this because she faced many consequences in life. In order of events, first Mr. Birling sacked her, then Sheila gets her sacked from her next job, Gerald finishing an affair when it suited him, Mrs. Birling denied her getting help from a charity and then Eric getting her pregnant. I think that Priestley does this well. I think that J.B.Priestley focused on a middle-classes family because he wanted to criticize his own society. He uses this criticism on the Birlings who are people who don't care about anything or anyone expect for themselves. The Birlings wealth is slighted connected with Eva's misfortunes. Eva is a person who works hard and suffers a lot through life. The Birlings didn't care about her and didn't help her. In the end Eva ends up committing suicide. Irony has three definitions. The first definition is a form of humour in which you say the opposite of what you really mean. The second definition is the irony of a situation when there is an unexpected connection between things or when factors combine in an odd or unusual way. ...read more.


While the inspector said his speech, he used the terms 'Fire and blood and anguish.' The inspector is saying if men are not civilised, they will be taught in a war. The inspector says war will occur if peace is not accomplished. The ' fire and blood and anguish' term is a reference to point out the huge number of people who were involved in the two great wars. The inspector said what he felt in his final speech. His speech had reached out to Sheila and Eric and not the rest of the characters. Sheila and Eric then committed to change their ways. Sheila, whilst arguing with her parents about not carrying on life the way it was, used many different quotes to express her views. She said, " But that wont bring her back to life will it," and " Between us we drove that girl to commit suicide," and " But, Mother, don't forget that he showed you a photograph of the girl before that, and you obviously recognised it." Sheila and Eric hold hope for the younger generation and hope to build a new world. Preistley was criticising the behaviour and the complacency of his own society through the Birling's generation and if they do not change, it could lead to many consequences. The older generation are too rigid, as they don't learn from their mistakes. He is trying to say that his society are too happy about life and do not care about anything else. ...read more.

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