• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

How Would a Modern Day Audience Respond To a Performance of ‘an Inspector Calls?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

HOW WOULD A MODERN DAY AUDIENCE RESPOND TO A PERFORMANCE OF 'AN INSPECTOR CALLS?' An Inspector Calls is set in 1912, the play is set in the dining room of a Mr Birling's household in the city of Brumley, an Industrial City in the north of the Midlands. From the opening scene of Act One, J.B. Priestley wants the audience to think that the Birlings are just an average middle class family of the time. In fact, they have a hidden past that will be revealed during the course of the play. The Play starts off with the Birlings making a toast to the marriage of Mr and Mrs Birling's daughter, to a son of a wealthy (upper class) businessman. We learn by this scene about the personalities of the characters these include Arthur Birling who is a slightly pompous, proud man that does seem to care for his family but deep down he really cares more for the business gains of the marriage more than that his only daughter is the one getting married. Sybil Birling is the wife of Mr Birling and always seems to be complaining e.g. Sheila! And Eric! And Now Arthur! Nevertheless, she does have a nice side to her "Yes, Gerald. ...read more.

Middle

The people originally watching this play would have just been through World War 2 and so they would find the final warning to the Birlings very prophetic "But just remember this. One Eva Smith has gone - but there are millions and millions and millions of Eva Smiths and John Smiths still left with us, with their lives, their hopes and fears, their suffering and their chance of happiness, all intertwined with our lives, and what we say and do. We don't live alone. We are members of one body. We are responsible for each other. And I tell you that the time will soon come when, if men will not learn that lesson, then they will be taught it in fire and blood and anguish. Good Night" A 1946 and 2002 audience would find some of Mr Birling's comments ironic for example the comment about the titanic "...Bigger and faster all the time. And then Ships. Why, friend of mine went over this new liner last week - the Titanic - she sails next week - forty six thousand eight hundred tons - New York in five days - and every luxury - and unsinkable, absolutely unsinkable..." And a comment about an inevitable war (second world war) ...read more.

Conclusion

Significantly, the Inspector himself neither forgives nor punishes. Each character is made to face up to the fact that they must find the courage to judge themselves: only then will they have learned enough to be able to change. Sometimes, the Inspector behaves as the voice of social conscience: "You see, we have to share something. If there's nothing else, we'll have to share our guilt". He points out that social responsibilities become greater as privileges increase. Having studied the play and seen a faithful television production of it I would like to end by saying that "An Inspector Calls" by J.B Priestly is not just about one well-off old fashioned Edwardian family and one poor working class girl it is a play about morals and the way we should all try to live our lives as best we can and trying not go down the path of the birlings, it is also about not re-making the mistakes that has already happened in the past (Edwardian society) and so a modern 21st century audience can still get some good ideas from a 20th century play. The Inspector's dire warning, that if we don't have a social conscience and be more responsible for each other we will pay the price, this can still be relevant today by a way of guidance to show how we can end up if we follow the Birlings' route. Chris Hunt 11W3 Page 1 of 3 ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE J.B. Priestley section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE J.B. Priestley essays

  1. 'An Inspector calls' is set in 1912 and was written for a 1946 audience. ...

    This agrees with the statement that 'An Inspector calls is out of date' as although this lesson has long been learnt, people seem to be forgetting, and maybe they need to be reminded again. From this point of view I have reached a conclusion; 'An Inspector calls' is not out

  2. Both Mr Birling from ‘An Inspector Calls’ and Ebenezer Scrooge from a Christmas Carol ...

    He thinks that people who need charity should find their own way to success instead of getting charity from other people. He has a lot of money and even then he does not give any of it to charity: "Many can't go there; and many would rather die.

  1. Why is the end of Act Two, An Inspector Calls, so powerful? Is it ...

    For instance , when Mrs Birling refuses the girl any help. She says, "The girl asked for instance.... So I used influence to have it refused." This emphasises that Priestley is theory about this world and shows how people are selfish and don't share or give to people who are in need of our help and assistance.

  2. A Production of An inspector calls.

    up in an awful situation, just as the Birlings and Gerald did when they received the phone call at the end to say an inspector was on his way round. I liked this cliff hanger ending as the audience gets to decide the next act in their conscience.

  1. Imagine that you are directing a production of ‘An Inspector Calls’. Write to the ...

    did not give that girl a pay rise and how he would have if he was in charge, Mr Birling replied by saying that I will give the going rate for the employees and that he only gets the going rate as well so why should he give more and get less back.

  2. Examine the role of Eva in ‘An Inspector Calls’

    The very na�ve Sheila played a big role in the dismissal of Eva. She complained to the manager of Milwords as she had caught Eva laughing at her while she was trying an item of clothing on the in the shop.

  1. Is an Inspector Calls a successful modern day morality play?

    The rich should have been supporting the poor instead of looking down on them in disgust, it is there collective responsibility. The characters do represent real life people in that they show people making mistakes and being totally oblivious to them.

  2. 'You cannot be happy when you are surrounded by people who are unhappy' [J.B. ...

    The family members are very sure of themselves and act confidently around each other at the beginning. The Birlings and Gerald are drinking port and are taking advantage of having their parlourmaid, Edna, on hand- 'Giving us the port, Edna?'.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work