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Consider the many ways in which J.B. Priestly uses the character of Inspector Goole as a dramatic device in the play An Inspector Calls.

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Post 1914 drama written coursework task An Inspector Calls - J. B. Priestly The task I have been set and the purpose of this essay is to consider the many ways in which J.B. Priestly uses the character of Inspector Goole as a dramatic device in the play An Inspector Calls. I aim to discuss, in this essay, the character's reactions to the inspector and the type of relationships formed between them. I shall discuss the Inspector's entrance and exit and also his final speech. I shall also talk about the many ways the inspector creates dramatic tension within the play. I shall also talk about the Inspector's character and behaviour and the effect he has on the family. Finally I shall conclude by discussing the ways Priestly has written many of his own thoughts and views into the play, and evaluating the effectiveness of the Inspector as a dramatic device. The entrance of the inspector is poignant because of the irony of the situation. Before the Inspector entered the room Mr. Birling had been talking about how it was important to look after only yourself. This is ironic considering what they are about to learn. Edna's line, "Edna Please, sir, an inspector's called." is crucial to the play as it signifies the dramatic change that is about to affect all their lives. ...read more.


Occasionally Sheila would voice her thoughts and once she admits her doubts to the inspector. "Sheila ...That's true. You know. (She goes close to him, wonderingly.) I don't understand about you." The way the inspector has of 'knowing all' yet not being known by any of the characters is one of the ways he creates a lot of dramatic tension in the play and between the characters. Another way he achieves this is his use of Sarcasm and rhetorical questions. For example; "Inspector (sharply) Your daughter isn't living on the moon. She's here in Brumley too." "Inspector (severely) Do you want me to tell you - in plain words?" The inspector uses rhetorical questions, not to lead people into further confession but to prevent the family from getting side tracked. The Inspector's bluntness is not something that you would expect from him, being a police officer. This rudeness is what agitates the characters the most and it creates a lot of dramatic tension. The Inspector also answers back to the characters; "Inspector (turning on him sharply) Why should you do any protesting?..." And is very blunt towards them. "Inspector Yes. And she's right. Mrs B. (haughtily) I beg your pardon! Inspector (very plainly) I said Yes - I do understand her. And she's right." He also cuts in and interrupts the characters. "Birling Now look here, Inspector - Inspector (cutting in, with authority) ...read more.


Having evaluated the play I have discovered many things about the character of the Inspector. Throughout the play he acts as a voice for others, either Priestly or occasionally even the audience. Despite constantly revealing things about the family members not once is anything ever revealed about him, this adds to the inspectors enigmatic and mysterious qualities which is what gives the inspector what he needs to have such an effect on the audience. I think the Inspector worked extremely well as a dramatic device in the play, creating tension when needed, using many techniques to get across important points, but most of all remaining insignificant. There can be no dispute over the fact that the inspector is a vital part of the play, however until the end, he never seems to really play a big part. Until the end, and his final speech, the inspector is merely seen as someone to bring about the events of the play, never once does such an event involve him. The Inspector could be seen as representing fate and destiny in the play, giving each character in turn the push they needed to realise the way they've been living is not acceptable, and their actions can have dire consequences. This sort of realisation hits, not only the characters, but also the audience, which may have been exactly what Priestly was trying to do. Nell Keene Page 1 An Inspector Calls Candidate Number - 0171 Centre Number - 66625 ...read more.

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