An Inspector Calls by J.B. Priestley
In many respects, "An Inspector Calls" is like a conventional
"whodunit". Many of the characters in the play are strong individuals
such as the Inspector, who is a typical conventional character.
JB.Priestly uses dramatic devices and cliffhangers, which turn the
play into "whodunit". However, in many respects "An Inspector Calls"
is different since the inspector is only interrogating and doesn't go
beyond, finding out what happened.
"An Inspector Calls" is just like a traditional whodunit by how most
of the characters are strong individuals.
Firstly, Mr.Birling who is the "hard headed businessman" is taken as a
strong character by how he stands up for what he knows is right
according to his own judgement. Mr.Birling who was "lord major 2 years
ago" is first seen as a strong character, when the Inspector questions
him. When telling his side of the story, Mr.Birling spoke firmly to
the Inspector and even at one time, told the Inspector "I don't like
that tone!" then he went that much further by saying in an angry tone,
"look here, Inspector, I consider this uncalled for and officious.
I've half a mind to report you."
The Inspector is shown as a strong individual throughout the play, as
he's the one that is questioning the possible "suspects". He
continually "cuts through massively" when people are talking, showing
that he's the one that is in charge and when he wants someone to
listen to him, then they do. Sheila even says about him " I hate to
think how much he knows that we don't know", so the Inspector is
obviously very wise which implies that he's a strong character in that
sense. The Inspector also has got a moralising tone as he says things
like "we don't live alone. We are members of one body," and "we are
responsible for one another". This is unlike a traditional whodunit,
as the Inspector shouldn't be giving advice on how to live your life
the right way.
The Inspector is also a strong individual character by how he can
quite easily make all the suspects give in to what he wants them to
Mrs. Birling is also shown as a strong individual character as she is
one of the main characters that don't give into the Inspectors
questions. She doesn't take any rudeness from him and she makes it
clear that she is no pushover. When the Inspector continually asked
her questions Mrs Birling said, "If you think you can bring pressure
to bear upon me, Inspector your quite mistaken". Mrs Birling carried
on telling the Inspector "If I prefer not to discuss the...