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Explain how J B Priestley builds up dramatic tension in “An Inspector Calls”.

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Explain how J B Priestley builds up dramatic tension in "An Inspector Calls" The play "An Inspector Calls, was written by J B Priestley within a week of World War 2 ending in 1945, but set in 1912, when Britain still had its Empire and was a wealthy country. Priestley believed that the time span between these dates is to make us aware of what has happened and learn from the mistakes made. Mr Birling like many other industrialists of the time was blind to the consequences of his actions as well as events happening around him, he was certain that there would be no war and that the Titanic was invincible and could never sink. He believed in every man for himself, and to ignore those who think that we should look after others. He is unable to see why nations go to war. It never occurs to him that people may value other things more greatly. He is a prosperous factory owner, whose first priority's in life is to make money. The play commences in a very comforting room, the mood is very relaxed and comforting, as the lighting is "pink and intimate", and is very soft. ...read more.


Even if he did show the picture to the rest of the family, it would be one at a time and not as a group, which makes a huge difference, as Sheila goes rushing out the door crying her eyes out, as she recognizes the person in the photo. It is at this time where you can see the reactions on everybody's face, just to see what parts they played in the suicide. Which is when Sheila comes back and realizes that there's more than meets the eye about this Inspector, he knows a lot more than we originally think. Sheila sort of takes the part of the audience, as she asks questions, and tells people not to say things, because she knows exactly what the Inspector is trying to do, along with the audience, its as if she feels the same tension, as Mrs Birling is just trying to tell the Inspector things that may get herself into more and more trouble. The first scene then ends with the Inspector going "well", and the audience are just dying to know what is going to be said, this is very well done for tension and drama even. ...read more.


in the suicide, because in early September 1911 Gerald broke off the affair, leaving Eva distressed, upset and all alone with no job and no one to take care of her. Then for about two months Eva left Brumley and came back to meet Eric in November. Eva then finds that she is pregnant, this is very important, because this is what links her to Mrs Birling as in late March 1912 she goes to Mrs Birling's organization for help. Although this help is refused by Mrs Birling meaning that she is now in the chain of events that lead to Eva Smiths death. By this time, she just doesn't feel wanted or needed, and decides that her life is no longer worth living, and commits suicide. After all this an Inspector calls at Birling's home and asks some questions, then he leaves and there is a phone call, there wasn't an Inspector Goole in the police, meaning that this man was an impostor. This has a dramatic effect on the audience, because they are stunned, but the story of Eva Smith was completely true, as the police officer on the phone explained, "we have sent over an Inspector, he will arrive soon". ...read more.

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