The Role of Inspector Goole in in An Inspector Calls by J.B. Priestly
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The Role of Inspector Goole in An Inspector Calls
Examine the role of Inspector Goole in An Inspector Calls & study the impact his role has on the rest of the characters in the play.
Inspector Goole is the most important character in the play ‘An
Inspector Calls’ because he is the catalyst for the events that take place in the play. Priestley’s intensions were to reveal to his audience the social state of England in 1945. He felt that little had changed since the turn of the century. Preistley was a socialist and he very strongly believed that everyone should be equal. In this play
Preistley shows to the audience that at this time it was Socialist vs
Capitalist, and that everyone was separated in to social classes.
These…show more content…
Even though these 2 families are very powerful people themselves. The Inspector treats them equal as anyone else where as most people do, he doesn't treat them with a great deal of respect. He says to Mr Birling '"Puplic men, Mr Birling, have responsibilities as well as privilages."' I believe that he is talking to Mr Birling as if he was a child when saying that to him.
In the play Inspector Goole is a catalyst, the word catalyst means to speed somthing up. He gets the Birlings and Gerald to confess to being involved with Eva Smith/Daisy Renton in some way. Inspector Goole is very good at creating tension and drama. For example when someone asks he a question he will now answer it, he will just ask a question back.
He manages to break the family down and get them to own up to things.
'"one person and one line of inquiry at a time."'
this shows he he that he wants to deal with each individual sepratly so that he can break them down easier than if they were all united and could defend eachother. He never really does seem like a real policeman as he is very rude and arrogant. There is a lot of dramatic irony as we know he isn't a real inspector but the Birlings don't.
I think the in the play Preistly has used Inspector Goole to express the way he feels about the world. He shows us that at the time of this play it was very much Capatilism vs Socialism,
In An Inspector Calls, the central theme is responsibility. Priestley is interested in our personal responsibility for our own actions and our collective responsibility to society. The play explores the effect of class, age and sex on people's attitudes to responsibility, and shows how prejudice can prevent people from acting responsibly.
So, how does Priestley weave the themes through the play?
The words responsible and responsibility are used by most characters [character: A person portrayed by an actor in a play; an individual in a narrative or non-fiction text; a real or imaginary individual's personality or reputation. ] in the play at some point.
Each member of the family has a different attitude to responsibility. Make sure that you know how each of them felt about their responsibility in the case of Eva Smith.
The Inspector wanted each member of the family to share the responsibility of Eva's death: he tells them, However, his final speech is aimed not only at the characters on stage, but at the audience too:
One Eva Smith has gone - but there are millions and millions and millions of Eva Smiths and John Smiths still left with us, with their lives, their hopes and fears, their suffering and chance of happiness, all intertwined with our lives, and what we think and say and do.
The Inspector is talking about a collective responsibility, everyone is society is linked, in the same way that the characters are linked to Eva Smith. Everyone is a part of , the Inspector sees society as more important than individual interests. The views he is propounding are like those of Priestley who was a socialist.
He adds a clear warning about what could happen if, like some members of the family, we ignore our responsibility:
And I tell you that the time will soon come when, if men will not learn that lesson, when they will be taught it in fire and blood and anguish.
What would Priestley have wanted his audience to think of when the Inspector warns the Birlings of the ?
Probably he is thinking partly about the world war they had just lived through - the result of governments blindly pursuing 'national interest' at all costs. No doubt he was thinking too about the Russian revolution in which poor workers and peasants took over the state and exacted a bloody revenge against the aristocrats who had treated them so badly.
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