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How successful is Priestley's use of 'Dramatic Effect' in An Inspector Calls?

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Introduction

How successful is Priestley's use of 'Dramatic Effect' in An Inspector Calls? In this essay, the purpose of the writing is to explain the dramatic effect used in the play and at the end evaluate how successful it was. It will mainly look at the Birling's before the Inspector, then after the Inspector. It will not necessarily evaluate the use in each paragraph but give the reader a better understanding of it. When the curtain is pulled back and the play is about to commence, the common opening is a middle class family sitting round a dinner table looking delighted. The lights are fairly dim, bright enough for one to see clearly but not bright. The furniture and the decoration of the house makes the audience feel as if the people at the table are not Royalty, but not poor. In productions such as the mid 80's BBC dramatization, the man at the head of the table indicates he is the man of the house, Mr Birling. The others are his wife, Mrs Birling, his children Eric and Shelia and a man named Gerald Croft who at first sight would seem a little strange as this appears to be a family dinner. ...read more.

Middle

He believes his family is well crafted and well formed and unsinkable prior to what he said about the Titanic itself. He calls himself 'A hard-headed man of business' and is unrelenting to see otherwise. He believes that past outcome can predict the future although the audience know that many of the things he says about War, Russia and the Titanic are untrue, which gives his little speeches a certain black comedy to them. He celebrates himself being a businessman and a man wise enough to predict the future although the audience know otherwise. He seems to forget the actual prospect of his daughter getting married but does not forget that it is his chance for knighthood. Mr Birling is a superb character when it comes to making a conflict with the audience and his joke which implies Eric may have caused a scandal is also humorous and dramatic when he himself has a secret. It is only when the Inspector arrives that Birling begin to feel uneasy. There is a lot of irony in the scene where Birling requests for more light signifying that he, birling is to be inspected rather than the Inspector calling about a warrant. ...read more.

Conclusion

They make fun of the Inspector and all but the children seem to be upset about the night's events and only have the children changed their views. This could show that there is a good chance of survival for the world if the message the Inspector was giving them if the Birling children picked up on it but still shows that the Birling's have not learnt the error of their ways from the phoney Inspector. When the telephone rings, it's a matter of time before Birling realises he should've changed his ways. Apparently a girl has died and an Inspector is on his way to ask some questions. He knows now that if he didn't change his ways with Goole, he will when the new Inspector comes. In conclusion, JB Priestley has effectively used the dramatic effect perfectly. He has managed to make the Inspector a harsh character, yet he has warm views towards life. He makes a great story in the right setting which still can have some meaning today. The moral is to look after one another, otherwise War does break out and other disasters. The Birling's=Titanic, Eva Smith= Iceberg By Christopher Pettit-Mee ...read more.

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