Role of the Inspector in An Inspector Calls Essay

1885 Words 8 Pages
Consider the role of the Inspector in “An Inspector Calls”? And what we learn about Priestley’s view on society through the character and his effect on others.

The traditional Englishmen’s home is his castle goes out the window, just so that inspector Goole can solve a mystery. A mystery, that by his line of questioning, he already knows the answer to.

An Inspector Calls was written in 1945 by John Boynton Priestley, just as the Second World War was ending and Britain was looking forward to life without war. The play is set in 1912, when Britain still had its Empire and was a wealthy country before the First World War – it was also the year that the Titanic sunk. Class structure was very strict and some people were willing to risk
…show more content…
The time span between these two dates could be aimed at making sure that people learned from the mistakes made.

The author J B Priestley was seen as one of a new breed of authors: a radical political and social thinker of his time. He was well known for one particular type of play `time plays', which this play is an example. He saw an urgent need for social change and expressed this in his play `An Inspector Calls'. J B Priestley hoped his play would help create the desired effect of positive unity amongst the public, giving society the chance with hindsight to look back on what had occurred and learn from this e.g. two World Wars, the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbour and an atomic bomb and not just carry on life in the same way as before. He wanted to make sure that everything that had been fought for would not have been in vain.

The inspector is described as “not a big man but he creates at once an impression of massiveness, solidity and purposefulness. He is a man in his fifties, dresses in a plain darkish suit of the period. He speaks carefully, weightily, and has a disconcerting habit of looking hard at the person he addresses before actually speaking.”
This description is important because it sets the scene for the inspector by telling the readers/audience that he will have a big part in the play and that no-one will irritate him, not even Mr Birling who is bigger and higher up the social ladder then the inspector.

Related Documents