An Inspector Calls Analysis Analysis Essay Example
An Inspector Calls Analysis Analysis Essay Example

An Inspector Calls Analysis Analysis Essay Example

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  • Pages: 4 (903 words)
  • Published: October 12, 2017
  • Type: Essay
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'An Inspector Calls' is set in 1912, but was written by J. B Priestly in 1945. In the play, the Titanic is a week away from it's maiden voyage - when it hit an iceberg and sank. Mr Birling, the head of the household, says that: "The Titanic.

.. sails next week..

. unsinkable, absolutely unsinkable".Because of Birling's optimism, saying that there is no chance of the Titanic sinking, the audience watching in 1946 (when it was first performed) may see him as a bit ignorant. This is called dramatic irony - the audience know something that the characters don't. The audience may see him as ignorant because they know that the ship was sinkable - as it sank on it's first voyage. Some people may know people who had died on the ship, and they may be particularly affe


cted by this dramatic device.

Another example of dramatic irony is when Birling says "there isn't a chance of war". The audience know that there have been two wars - World War One and World War Two - since 1912, and the Second War has only just finished. Because people will also have had friends or relatives who had died in the war, Birling saying "there isn't a chance of war" could have affected members of the audience quite radically. Birling's examples of optimism - the war and the Titanic - also teach us not to be too optimistic.This is something that Priestly tried to put across - that you can't always be optimistic, as you would never expect anything bad to happen.

Sometimes, you have to be realistic. The playwright, J. B Priestly, also tries to teach th

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audience to be responsible; that our actions have consequences. In Act Three, just before the Inspector leaves, he says: "We are members of one body. We are responsible for each other.

" This final speech from the inspector 'sums up' the theme running through the play - that what we do affects others, not just ourselves.This theme is also backed up by what the characters believe they 'pushed' Eva Smith into doing, such as Sheila believing that getting Eva fired caused her to kill herself. At the beginning of the play, before Inspector Goole enters, the lighting is described as "pink and intimate". This could reflect the mood of the family - they are relaxed and happy because of Sheila and Gerald's engagement. The colour pink is a 'warm' colour, and can represent love, happiness, and comfort. This colour would therefore reinforce the way the family are feeling.

Alternatively, this colour could lull the audience into a false sense of security. The soft colour may make the audience think that nothing bad is going to happen. When the inspector arrives, the lighting changes to become "brighter and harder". This could represent the personality of the inspector - he is a harsh kind of person.

However, it may also represent an interrogation. Interrogations are usually associated with bright lights, and this would reflect what the inspector is doing - he is interrogating the family about their relationship with Eva Smith.The lighting in this play is used to change the atmosphere - from calm and happy to harsh and interrogative. The audience may only be slightly affected by this change, but it will enhance Inspector Goole's character, making

him seem serious about his case. The noise of the doorbell interrupts Mr Birling in his speech about how everyone should just look after themselves - "'a man has to mind his own business and look after himself and his own-and' We hear the sharp ring of a front door bell".

This doorbell signals the arrival of the inspector.It could imply that the inspector disagrees with what Birling is saying, as the doorbell cuts straight through Birling's speech. The audience may be affected by this straight away, but as they realise why the inspector is there, they may link this interruption to the death of the girl. The inspector tries to teach the family that actions have consequences (which is what the play is about), so he would disagree with looking after just oneself.

This may be why the playwright had the doorbell cut through this speech of Birling's - to enhance the theme in the play.When Edna announces the arrival of the police inspector, Birling, Gerald and Eric all joke about what is going on. Gerald says, in a light voice: "Unless Eric's been up to something". He is joking about why the inspector is there, that maybe Eric has done something wrong.

However, he doesn't mean this. This light heartedness - the humour and laughing - shows that they do not feel as though they have done anything wrong. Birling says: "It may be something about a warrant", which shows that he doesn't think it is anything serious.Eric, on the other hand, is unsettled by what Gerald says. He replies, in an uneasy tone of voice: "I don't think it's very funny" This

may show that he thinks he has something to do with the inspector's visit - and, we later find out, he does.

The "uneasy" stage direction shows that he is slightly nervous about the inspector's visit. Alternatively, he may be "uneasy" about what Gerald and Birling were saying when Eric was out of the room. The audience may pick up on this, and may be suspicious about what is going on with Eric.

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