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Which character or characters changes the most in 'An Inspector Calls'

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Introduction

Which character or characters changes the most in 'An Inspector Calls'? In the essay I will try to answer the question of, 'Which character changes the most in An Inspector Calls?' I will do this by; explaining the role played by the character in the play; showing how and why I think they change; focusing on the effect on the audience by the stage directions and settings; showing what messages Priestly manages to get across to the audience in 1946 through his play. To do that I will comment on: * The importance of social responsibility - especially of those in superior social position. * The effects of the characters actions over time. * The conditions of the workers and the unemployed * The social class system at the time when the play is set, (rich and poor). And also the men and women's roles in life, the importance of equality and socialism. I think that Sheila is the one that changes the most in the course of the play. I think this because she turns from being the stereotypical early 19th century child who abides by her parents rules and does as her parents say, to become more independent. The show her newfound independence, she begins telling her parents what she thinks about them and freely gives her opinions and feelings about the events in the play. ...read more.

Middle

Whereas Eric and Sheila's views change from also being stubborn and ignorant just like their parents, to their own ones. They feel guilty for the chain of events, but Arthur and Sybil do not. This shows that the younger generation are hope for the future and are open to new ideas, unlike the older generation, who are trenched in their own opinions and ideas. Arthur and Sybil's views are almost of a nationalist nature, which Priestly disagrees with. This is why he wants to show in his play that the younger generation are becoming more socialist in their outlook. At the beginning of the play, Sheila seems to be young and innocent. Sheila is described as 'very pleased with life and rather excited' in the stage directions. You can tell that she is changing throughout the play by what she says. At the beginning of the play she has a bit of playful banter at the dinner table, "I should jolly well think not, Gerald, I'd hate you to know all about port - like one of those purple-faced old men" This shows the audience that she is young and teasing. She also says to Eric, "You're squiffy" This also shows that she uses word that a person of her age would use, and is not too sophisticated mentally. When Gerald gives her the wedding ring, "Oh - Gerald - you've got it - is it the one you wanted me to have?" ...read more.

Conclusion

From where they are placed at the dinner table, you can also assume that there may be some family problems. This is because Arthur and Sybil sit at opposite ends of the table to each other, which is unusual because usually the husband and wife would sit with each other if they got along well. Arthur and Gerald are at one side of the table, Sheila and Sybil are at the other, and Eric is placed in the middle. This maybe because Eric is the youngest in the family, and is not considered being a man yet. Priestly was concerned about some historical events and issues when he wrote 'An Inspector Calls'. He wrote it just after the first word war, which he was a victim, of having been in the army and sent home invalided. He was also concerned with the social class system, and was extremely socialist. At the time of the play, Britain was very Nationalist. The rich got richer and the poor got poorer. Men were the money earners and it was only recent that women were allowed to go to work and vote. Socialism at this time was important to people as it meant that everyone could get a job, no matter what his or her social background or financial status. I have achieved my target of saying, 'Which character changes the most in An Inspector Calls?' I have done this by explaining the role of Sheila and Eric in the play and by conveying my views on how she has changed. ...read more.

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