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How does Sheila's character develop during the course of the play?

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Woolmer Hill School November of 2005 by Marina Scremin-Milke Year 10GBa English Department How does Sheila's character develop during the course of the play? Coursework "An Inspector Calls" was written by J. B. Priestley in 1945, but set in 1912. I believe that Priestley set the play in that year to prove his philosophy and show his purpose on writing this play. Because of that, I will study briefly the historical background of the early 20th century, which is very important for the understanding of the play. It is set in 1912, when no war was envisaged by men, when the higher society was complacent, proud of themselves, and more important, prejudice in a way that the 21st century doesn't know anymore. Two years later, a war started, six years later the general strike happened, eight years later, women got the right to vote, and even eleven years later another war began. The attitude of youngsters of 1912 and this chain of events started to build up today's society, which has a lot less prejudice than the early 20th century's society. Priestley's main objective on setting the play in 1912 is to show how people regard to each other's life, especially when they think is nothing to do with them. ...read more.


Because them both realize their part on Eva Smith's death, and both are open to the idea of responsibility, of accepting their responsibility on what they've done, on recognizing their mistakes and then learning from that. Sheila and Eric represent the part of society that is really willing to change, they are the only hope and way of changing something in the society. Priestley was part of this society that is willing to change something because on his play he supports Sheila on giving her strength by the inspector. When Birling realizes that the Inspector took control of the situation he tries to threat the Inspector by showing his superiority, the superiority that he believes he has and the Inspector just doesn't respond to them as Birling expected him to, as well as Sheila and is from the Inspector that Sheila gets the understanding of Eva Smith's death, she is the first one to understand what that night is all about and on understanding that she realizes she must change from the shallow naive girl to a woman that is aware of the world outside her own life and mature enough to start thinking for herself instead of depending on her parents for everything, which is what her parents and also Gerald doesn't realize. ...read more.


She learns from the Inspector, and understands the purpose of his visit - To warn them of what will happen if they do not change their ways. In his final speech, the inspector says, "If men will not learn that lesson, then they will be taught it in fire and blood and anguish." The Inspector is the voice of Priestley in this play, and Sheila who is the one that is never going to forget the Inspector's words "Fire, blood and anguish". She points out to her parents and Gerald that there are moral considerations which should be more important than superficial worries about status and public embarrassment, trying to make them realize that it can be real, and if they don't learn now, they will to taught again and again till the day they change the way they act towards other people.It is evident throughout the play that Sheila demonstrates far more compassion for human life, and a lot less prejudice over class boundaries than her parents or Gerald, and she is more conscientious than any other one of them. The events of the play obviously affected her, and she has learned from the evening with the Inspector where the others have not about the way she should treat other people, especially those whom she might previously have considered 'lower' than her. ?? ?? ?? ?? ...read more.

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