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In this essay I will analyse how J.B Priestly uses dramatic devices to convey his concerns and ideas to the members of the audience, as well as interests and involve them in his play, in Act one of 'An Inspector Calls'.

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Introduction

In this essay I will analyse how J.B Priestly uses dramatic devices to convey his concerns and ideas to the members of the audience, as well as interests and involve them in his play, in Act one of 'An Inspector Calls'. John Boynton Priestly was born on 13th September 1894. He spent the first years of his life in a middle class home in Bradford. His father was a school master. At the age of 16 he left school to work as a wool merchant. J.B Priestly also fought in the 1st world war, and got injured when a trench collapsed and was sent home after illness from a gas attack. He was also very interested in politics, especially socialism. In 1949 he tried to be elected as an MP but unfortunately was unsuccessful. During the 1930's and 40's he wrote 40 plays. Out of the 40 plays he wrote 'An Inspector Calls' in 1945 which took him only a week. 'An Inspector Calls' is a bit like a murder-mystery except it is lacking in a murder. At the time the play was set there was no benefits system. ...read more.

Middle

Priestly must have done this to foreshadow the effects the Inspector is going to have on the characters later on in the play. The stage direction for the doorbell says 'We hear the sharp ring of a front door bell'. The door bell ringing has an effect on Birling, he stops to listen, this is the only time he does and when Gerald is speaking. Birling is unconcerned and doesn't realize what is going to happen to them. The effect it has on the audience is that it is someone important. Priestly may have chosen the doorbell to ring at that exact point so it cuts across Birlings speech about men looking after themselves. It also leaves Birling's speech hanging in the air. When the Inspector arrives the mood of the play changes from calm and happy to tense and important. The Inspector's initial effect on the characters is one of shock value. The Inspector says 'two hours ago a young woman died in the infirmary'. Eric's reaction to this is 'My God' which shows he is shocked. Birling speaks to the Inspector rather impatiently 'Yes, yes. Horrid business. ...read more.

Conclusion

I personally feel that Priestley's messages are very valuable and can freely admit that after the Billing's discovered that the Inspector was a fake and they were innocent I agreed with them, the ending surprised me. I do not need to be convinced that the messages are important and that everyone should have at least some understanding of them. I agree with Priestley that many of the things that happened in the play were wrong but I do not understand how in an industrial country Birling was in any way wrong to lay off several of his workers. He was entitled to as their boss and was well within his rights under a democratic government. I assume that as Priestley was a socialist he would disagree with this, as this is almost the total opposite of the socialist theology. I agree that the messages Priestley sent through the play are vitally important to any society. I also must emphasise that many of them have many important meanings that are equally if not more important within society today as they were when they were first written back in 1944/1945. ?? ?? ?? ?? Taibah Rehman English Language Coursework - 1 - An Inspector Calls ...read more.

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