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Examine The Way Priestly Gets His Socialist Message Across In The Play An Inspector Calls

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Examine The Way Priestly Gets His Socialist Message Across In The Play An Inspector Calls John Boynton Priestly was born in Bradford on the 13th of September 1894. He grew up in his fathers group of socialist friends; he became a socialist, and uses the characters of the Inspector, Eric and Sheila Birling to highlight his views in this play. The play is set in early 1912, before the two world wars, the government at this time were conservative capitalists, and the general attitudes of the older generation was every man for himself and his family and that no-one should worry about their actions and the effects they have on other people. When the play was written, in 1945, attitudes had change after the two world wars. The separations between the classes had been lessened, and people had started to care more for others. In this essay, I will discuss the socialist message represented by the actions of the characters in the play, and conclude whether the views were expressed well. When you start to read the playa and the title, it seems to be like any other detective novel, but when you reach the end, you discover it isn't really from a certain genre, but was written to express an opinion. ...read more.


After the Inspector leaves, and they discover he's a fake Sheila has been strongly marked by the inspector's words and still tries to profit from the message he gave, she says "It doesn't make any real difference y'know" meaning that although he wasn't really from the police, he had got the whole family to think of the consequences of their actions. The character of Sheila is impressionable being younger, her views have been altered towards thinking about others, so she has understood the Inspectors message. Sheila's reactions relate to the play's idea of expressing socialism by trying to take the blame, because through her guilt she portrays the underlying message of socialism, that you should be responsible for your own actions. However, Mrs. Birling is a refined, upper class woman. She would prefer to be quietly in control of the situation, and doesn't like being probed by the inspector. She tries to separate herself and her family from the like of Eva Smith, she says "I don't suppose for a, moment that we can understand why the girl committed suicide. Girls of that class..." Mrs. Birling strongly believes that the boundaries between the classes should not be breached and that not being working class, the Birlings' are different and wouldn't understand Eva's motives. ...read more.


The last speech the inspector makes is very important because it is the message of socialism "We don't live alone. We are members of one body." This is the message outlined in the play. Sheila and Eric are the only characters to have understood this and so then explaining that they should care, and Mr and Mrs. Birling being annoyed is very dramatic. Then there is the relief of all the characters after finding out Eva is not dead. Finally the 'phone call to alert them a girl has just died and the sense of d� j� vu when they discover that an Inspector will come and talk to them is very effective because it is open it makes the audience think about what will happen next. The play has no definite ending; it seems as if the story could restart, or as if there should be more to it. I think that the socialist message is portrayed well throughout An Inspector Calls, because the moral of the play is to care for people and be responsible for your actions or things, like Eva Smith's life, get messed up. This is made clear in many points and speeches made by the inspector, and with the effectiveness of the ending which leaves the audience thinking about what would happen next. ...read more.

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