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

Why has the play 'An Inspector Calls' remained popular for so long?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Ellie Whidden English Essay 'An inspector Calls' Why has the play 'An Inspector Calls' remained popular for so long? J.B.Priestley 'An Inspector Calls' is a play set in 1912 in the Birling's family dining room. It was written in 1945 and set in Brumley. It features a typical affluent upper class family who own a well run business. The play starts with a small family celebration in which the daughter, Sheila Birling, is getting engaged to Gerald (a business man of the same class). The head of the family, a very prominent opinionated man, makes several toasts to the couple and lectures them about his knowledge of the world. Everything is going cosily until an unexpected visitor turns up on the Birling family's doorstep. It's a very sleek, mysterious inspector. The Inspector brings news of a young girl's suicide. The Birling Family and Gerald first deny all connections with the suicide until the inspector rigorously questions each one of them and their shameful secrets are revealed. One of the reasons why J.B.Priestley's 'An Inspector Calls' has remained popular is because there is some hope for the younger generation. During most of the play the atmosphere is depressing, drab and sad. The play is based on the inspector accusing each member of helping with the suicide of the young girl. The family all concentrate on how it's not their fault. ...read more.

Middle

This is shown when the inspector questions Mrs Burling about Eva Smith. When Eva Smith falls pregnant Eric, the father also son to Mrs Burling, realises money is needed and steals some from his father. Mrs Burling states, not knowing Eric has done this, that the decent thing the father should do is marry her, therefore giving her money. Mr Burling also thinks highly of money as he tries to pay the minimum wages to his factory workers therefore earning himself more. At the beginning of act one he talks about how it would be a good idea if his company and Gerald's father's should combined. This idea of his is truly based on how much money he can earn himself. Mrs Burling also seems to crave money, but tries to give you the impression that she is innocent. She tries to shush Mr Burling when he brings this up at the dining table and later suggests that they should talk in private. 'Now Arthur, I don't think you should talk business just quite now.' In 'An Inspector Calls' it is noticeable that everything that J.B.Priestley either features or makes fun of happens today. Today there is prostitution, a big blame society and class structures. Money also plays a big part in the world today. You often see lots of people selling big issues. When a man of middle class walks past someone like this the initial reaction is 'Why are they there, what have they done to make themselves so low.' ...read more.

Conclusion

The type of humour J.B.Priestley uses is little amounts and sparingly. It breaks up the serious ideas in the play and allows the audience to digest the drama easily. The humour mostly features in the part played by the Inspector. I think this is because the audience envisage the inspector as quite a stern man. Like the storyline, Priestly has done this to allow the audience to digest him easily. The inspector says lines like 'We didn't think you meant Buckingham Palace' and 'I don't play golf, it's a shame.' Finally J.B.Priestley's 'An Inspector calls', I think, tries to convey one important message to it's audience; Helping others is the key to success. The play shows a very Christian message of how we need to make today's society better and to prove Margaret Thatcher's saying wrong, and perhaps the views of Mr Burling, 'that there is no such thing as society.' 'An Inspector Calls' is a play which reaches out through the inspector to its audience. The inspector, a very careful but weighty man, shows us that there isn't a need in this world for jealously, shameful secrets or class structures. Through interrogating the rest of the characters he unveils each of their problems and shows us how it is wrong. 'An Inspector Calls' has the ability to engross its audience and to educate them at the same time. It shows us that the lessons we learn from watching and reading this play may make us want to try and rebuild society today. ...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. Inspector Calls A Grade

    Mr Birling saw an opportunity here to boost his financial projections with his company to merge with Gerald Crofts Company, "...working together for lower costs and higher prices". Once again, the benefit of setting the play in 1912 is that the modern audience may see this arrangement as peculiar as

  2. "An Inspector Calls" thoughts of Sheila Birling and Arthur Burling.

    my mother turned her away, I was dismayed with her, when she told the inspector " We've done a great deal of useful work in helping in deserved cases". This was just repulsive, to find that my mother just turned her away because she did not like her and tried

  1. inspector calls

    Birling's behavior to the Inspector is quite rude and also what she says. 'If I was, what business is it of yours?' At this the inspector replies quite severely, 'Do you want me to tell you in plain words?'

  2. Why do you think that An Inspector Calls still remains popular today? An Inspector ...

    A typical wealthy young man of the day. I think that we can still associate the Birling family with people of today. For example, your wealthy young men of today, spending their money and time on drinking etc. I think that you come across people like this a lot of the time.

  1. Tale of 2 cities

    It also shows that he is jealous of Charles and reminds himself he could have been just like him. Carton then decides to dedicate his life to protecting Lucie and her family, this is what you call spiritual love. This is shown when he quotes "there is a man would

  2. inspector calls

    same and there aren't lots of characters so we get confused and when something does happen it comes as a big shock to everybody. Act 1 and Act 2 are so similar in many ways because in act 1 they find out about all of the affairs and problems that they have all had.

  1. Why is the play “An Inspector Calls” still a popular play today?

    At the beginning of the play, Birling makes a speech to Eric and Gerald about the 'nonsense of community': "You'd think everybody had to look up to everyone else but a man has to mind his own business and look after himself and his own - " The doorbell interrupts

  2. J.B Preistly manages to include quite a lot of history about England. The play ...

    This is an example of dramatic irony (something the audience understands, but the character does not). Another thing that relates to the time period in the play is the rights of workers, such as Eva Smith. It shows that in 1912 they were still not taken seriously by employers.

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