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In Act one of 'An Inspector Calls', how does J.B Priestly use dramatic devices to convey his concerns and ideas to the members of the audience as well as interest and involve them in his play?

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In Act one of 'An Inspector Calls', how does J.B Priestly use dramatic devices to convey his concerns and ideas to the members of the audience as well as interest and involve them in his play? John Boynton Priestly was born in Yorkshire in 1894. He left school at 16 in order to gain life experience and joined the army at the outbreak of world war one. During his time in the army, he witnessed much suffering. This heavily influenced his writing to question the morals and responsibilities of society, which is a main theme in 'An Inspector Calls'. Priestly's main concerns at the time of writing 'An Inspector Calls' was the state of society and social inequality- there was a huge gap between the rich and the poor. Priestly was also a socialist (politically left wing) and most of the characters who Priestly is trying to convey to the audience as bad people are capitalist (politically right wing). This makes it even easier for him to put across his ideas as he can give the characters very stereotypical personalities. ...read more.


Priestly uses dramatic irony very early on in the play. One such example of this has already been mentioned, "the Titanic - she sails next week absolutely unsinkable". As Priestly wants Mr Birling to seem absurd he makes him say things which he knows will have that desired effect on the audience. Another such example is where he says, "I say there isn't a chance of war". this has the same effect on the audience as in the other case. As 'An Inspector Calls' is a play, the stage lighting is also very important when studying dramatic devices. At the beginning of the play the stage directions state that, "the lighting should be pink and intimate until the Inspector arrives, and then it should be brighter and harder". by having it lighter at the beginning it reflects the mood of the celebration that the Birlings are having. By being light it gives the mood a sense of relaxation, but when the inspector arrives and the lighting becomes harder, it gives the scene a sense of tension and panic. ...read more.


For example, when the only people left in the room are Gerald Croft and Sheila Birling, they talk about the dead girl and reveal some secrets to the audience while the other characters still don't know, "I'm sorry, Sheila but it was all over and done with last summer". the other characters still do not know this. This could also be another example and use of dramatic irony. Seeing as the above scene is also the end of Act one, it gives the audience a view of everything that has happened. It explains how Gerald came to know the dead girl and it also explains Sheila's views on the inspector, "he knows. Of course he knows. And i hate to think how much he knows that we don't know yet". This shows that Priestly intends the inspector to be seen not just as an Inspector, but something else, someone to reveal moral consciences. During Act one, the playwright uses many different dramatic devices to change your opinions of the Birlings. The use of dramatic irony in the play makes the Birlings often seem even more absurd than they are. Priestly also uses many different ways to involve the readers in the plot. ?? ?? ?? ?? Nathan Adams 11c Nathan Adams 11c ...read more.

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