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Why will " A.I.C" remain relevant and popular in the 21st Century?

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Introduction

Why will " A.I.C" remain relevant and popular in the 21st Century? 'An Inspector Calls' is a play written by J.B Priestley in 1945. The play is set in the fictional town Brumley, 1912. It is based on the Birling family, who are celebrating the engagement of their daughter Sheila to Gerald Croft when an Inspector arrives to question them. He tells them about the death of a young girl called Eva Smith, turning the joyous celebration into a sinister crime investigation. Each character has a different perception of the Inspector's revelations and it is revealed that each member played a part, driving 'Eva Smith' to suicide. But as the play progresses an unexpected twist is delivered, when we realise all is not what it seems. 'An Inspector Calls' remains relevant because of the issues that often occur in the play. This is when the Birlings as a whole family are prejudiced towards the lower class. An example of this is when Mrs Birling says, "As if a girl of that sort would ever refuse money." She is referring to Eva Smith when she refused to take money off Eric, as he was stealing it from his father, making out that she is worthless and needy. Throughout the play the Birlings make comments like these implying that they are far more superior than lower class people. ...read more.

Middle

J.B Priestley uses Dramatic Irony to show how Mr Birlings opinions are wrong and he doesn't listen to anyone else but himself, suggesting he is a pompous, self-satisfied man. A fool. This is still relevant today because people often think highly of themselves mainly of what class they are and believe they know more than anyone else. People like Tony Blair or George Bush. For this play J.B Priestley uses 'real' time, meaning the timing is exactly as you see it and there is no end of act or three days later. Directors like to use this sort effect because it is a good way of making the performance more dramatic and real. Also in the play you have a taste that there is life going on in the outside world such as when the telephone rings or in the theatrical version when there are children and the old woman outside the house. The audience are then more involved in the play as they are gripped to the storyline. The play is very dramatic because Priestley creates a lot of tension throughout the play keeping us interested at all time. The family are shown to be very happy at the beginning celebrating an engagement then the Inspector arrives unexpectedly and talks about the family's involvement with a death of a girl. ...read more.

Conclusion

In the end he shows that the younger generation realise that they should change their ways whereas the Inspector intimidated the older generation, they laugh it off and carry on as they were. The Inspector is able to crack beneath the surface of the 'happy family' act and is shows us what they are really like. Each character is accused of selfishness and is sort of a punished by the Inspector for example he reveals Geralds affair with Eva in front of Sheila and Mr Birlings fears for his family's reputation at the inquest. This is why the Inspector's last speech gives them a warning but only Sheila and Eric realise this. The audience are encouraged to think about their own lives and how they could be improved. The inspector's last speech really made a difference he was able to change Sheila, although she found out he wasn't real, " No because I remember what he said, how he looked, and what he made me feel. Fire, blood and anguish. And it frightens me the way you talk, and I can't listen to any more of it." This shows she has changed and learned something. Although he was only able to change the younger generation, I think in some way the older learned their lesson in the end as well. Priestley shows us that we all have responsibilities and we need to think about others as well as ourselves, otherwise it could lead to terrible consequences. ...read more.

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