This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

The Dramatic Importance Of The Inspector In J.B. Priestley's An Inspector Calls

5467 words - 22 pages

The Dramatic Importance of the Inspector in J.B. Priestley's An Inspector Calls

In this play, Inspector Calls J.B. Priestley expresses his personal
viewpoint on society in general throughout the play by using the
character Inspector Goole. His viewpoint is evident in the main themes
through out the play which are social responsibility, power and lies.
These themes help to articulate his belief that all people share a
common humanity and so all are part of a community whereby everyone
should help each other, regardless class.

Social responsibility is possibly the most prominent theme through the
play and is explored a number of times. Priestley shows how lack of
social responsibility can cause a ‘chain of events’ which will lead to
something rather more severe. One example of this lack of
responsibility is when Mr Birling tells Eva Smith to ‘clear out’. He
doesn’t consider what would happen to her if she had no money. He just
saw her as a potential business threat she was one of the ‘four or
five ringer leaders’ who demanded higher wages. Mr Birling feels no
social responsibility for the welfare of his workers; he just wants to
make as much profit as possible.

Power is another theme that plays an important role in the play.
Priestley illustrates how the immoral use of power can once again have
severe consequences. He shows how the middle and upper class had great
authority over the working class who were often in desperate need of
money. The perfect example of this is when Sheila used her social
standing to have Eva Smith sacked from Milwards. Sheila blackmailed
the manager by saying ‘If they didn’t get rid of that girl I’d never
go to that place again and I’d persuade mother to close her account.
The manager was left with almost no choice but to sack Eva Smith
although you could say he showed a lack of responsibility by sacking
her as well. The main point is that Sheila neglected her power in
terms of status and used it to cause harm to a person she felt jealous
of.

The play is set in 1912 yet it was first performed in 1946. Dramatic
irony plays a key part in the play in terms of entertaining the
audience. The dates are vital in order for Priestley to make this
dramatic irony work.

In one of Mr Birling's monologue in Act 1 we see why the dates are so
important. During the course of his long winded speech Mr Birling
makes three statements all of which he wrongly foretells and this
helps us build up an image of a pompous and slightly foolish man. The
first is when he predicts peace and prosperity explaining ‘there isn’t
a chance of war’. This is the first instance of dramatic irony as the
audience know full well that two years later the 1st World War began.
The second is when he describes the Titanic as ‘unsinkable, absolutely
unsinkable’ and the audience know that the...

Find Another Essay On The Dramatic Importance of the Inspector in J.B. Priestley's An Inspector Calls

The Role and Function of the Inspector in J.B Priestley's An Inspector Calls

2581 words - 10 pages The Role and Function of the Inspector in J.B Priestley's An Inspector Calls 'An Inspector Calls' written by J.B Priestley, is set in 1912 and was written in 1945. In the play the Inspector appears to be very plain, dull and straightforward wearing a dark suit, and is rather sinister and suspicious. He, on his appearance, has a huge sense of "massiveness" to him, and has the authority to control and pull out information

The Role of the Inspector in J.B. Priestley's play "An Inspector Calls"

2058 words - 8 pages J.B. Priestley wrote the play "An Inspector Calls" in 1945 and set it in 1912. These dates are both relevant because he wrote his play in a world emerging from the Second World War, at a time when people were getting nostalgic about pre-world war one. Priestley used his play to try and show people that the idea of a community in 1912 was gradually being washed away by the upper classes and that the world needed to change rather than return to

Priestley's Presentation of the Inspector in An Inspector Calls

2030 words - 8 pages Priestley's Presentation of the Inspector in An Inspector Calls To properly answer the question, we must firstly consider what society was really like during the time that the play is based and then compare it to the time it was preformed. During the early 1900's, if you were rich, life was good. The British Empire was at its peak and trade unions were not powerful enough to cause significant grief for factory owners

Role of the Inspector in Priestley's An Inspector Calls

1024 words - 4 pages Examine the role of Inspector Goole in the play “An Inspector Calls” by J.B. Priestley. “An inspector calls” by J.B. Priestley is a fairly unusual Murder-Mystery play as it does not have a single murderer, but a group that contributed to a young woman’s suicide. This peculiarity also continues in that all of those accused are totally unaware of their involvement until they are forced to work it out for themselves, with a little help from

J.B. Priestley's An Inspector Calls

1723 words - 7 pages J.B. Priestley's An Inspector Calls I am currently studying a play called An Inspector Calls by J.B Priestly. Basically, this play is about a suicide in which a whole family, the Birlings are implicated. The play is set in the home of a middle class family, on a spring evening of 1912. This play contains an important message for today’s society. The Birling family is celebrating their daughter, Sheila’s engagement

J.B. Priestley's An Inspector Calls

860 words - 3 pages J.B. Priestley's "An Inspector Calls" "An Inspector Calls" is a politics based detective play script written by John Bonyton Priestley, or better know as J.B Priestley. The play takes place in the wealthy Birtling's family dining room, a room of which has "good solid furniture of the period", "the general effect is substantial and heavily comfortable but not cosy and homelike." The family are celebrating their daughters engagement

J.B. Priestley's An Inspector Calls

3601 words - 14 pages J.B. Priestley's An Inspector Calls I think that this play is very good at getting Priestley points across. After I had read the play it immediately made me think about the way I treat people. This is because in my view the way the message is delivered through the use of the character Inspector Goole, also the harsh reality of the story about the young girl, Eva Smith, and about her committing suicide. This is quite a

J.B. Priestley's An Inspector Calls

5235 words - 21 pages J.B. Priestley's An Inspector Calls An inspector calls was set 1n 1912, this is a play which contains many social and political messages. The war would have been an even sadder issue in 1947 when the play was first shown than it is now, and one which would have made people feel uneasy and would have provoked a lot of emotions and a lot of bad memories. This means that when Birling spoke about it in his speech, the

J.B. Priestley's An Inspector Calls - 4826 words

4826 words - 19 pages J.B. Priestley's An Inspector Calls J.B. Priestly wrote an Inspector Calls in the winter of 1944-1945 near the end of the Second World War. It only took him a week to write. He then sent it to Moscow (because there were no theatres available in London), where it was performed simultaneously in two theatres in 1945. It was first performed in this country in London on 1st October 1946 at the New Theatre. J.B. Priestly

J.B. Priestley's An Inspector Calls - 3393 words

3393 words - 14 pages J.B. Priestley's An Inspector Calls This play ‘An Inspector Calls,’ was written by J.B Priestly in 1945. John Boynton Priestly was a socialist, he thought that whether or not we understood that we live in a community, we have responsibility to look after others and not see any difference between classes. To portray his thoughts he wrote "An Inspector Calls" so that we would understand there is no difference between the

J.B. Priestley's An Inspector Calls - 3002 words

3002 words - 12 pages J.B. Priestley's An Inspector Calls John Boynton Priestley was one of the most popular, versatile and greatest authors of his day. His works of popular history and literary criticism are numerous, ending with the story of Literature and the western woman. However it was as a playwright and as a social thinker that he was especially important. Politically, J.B. Priestley was a patriotic socialist who did not

Similar Essays

The Dramatic Importance Of Arthur Burling's Speech In J.B. Priestley's An Inspector Calls

1624 words - 6 pages The Dramatic Importance of Arthur Burling's Speech in J.B. Priestley's An Inspector Calls For my English coursework I shall write about the dramatic importance of Arthur Burling's speech after dinner. An Inspectors Calls was written by J.B Priestley in 1945 however it was set in a pre-first world war setting (1912) in the fictional town of Brumley. J.B priestly uses this difference of 33 years to create dramatic

Creating Dramatic Tension In J.B. Priestley's An Inspector Calls

1619 words - 6 pages Creating Dramatic Tension in J.B. Priestley's An Inspector Calls "An Inspector Calls," is a play that incorporates many different and controversial aspects that remain indefinitely unresolved throughout the play. The moral issues of the play highlight the reality of the time and there relevance to modern day society as well as fifty years ago. The play demonstrates the human inability to recognise mistakes and

The Function And Symbolism Of The Inspector In J.B. Priestley's An Inspector Calls

1902 words - 8 pages The Function and Symbolism of the Inspector in J.B. Priestley's An Inspector Calls In “An Inspector Calls” by J.B. Priestley the Inspector is used as a voice of conscience and morality. The Inspector does this while interrogating a very prosperous and upper-middle class family who believe themselves to be above all. The dramatic impact that Priestley uses shows the importance, validity and presence of the inspector

The Function Of The Inspector In J.B. Priestley's An Inspector Calls

2941 words - 12 pages The Function of the Inspector in J.B. Priestley's An Inspector Calls J.B Priestly was a British journalist, novelist, playwright and essayist. He was born in 1894 in Bradford and died in 1984. The play "An Inspector Calls" is about a family who, each member without knowing, have participated in a young girl's suicide. Inspector Goole makes every member of the family realise that they have played a part in killing the