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How Is Eric Presented in an Inspector Calls

  • Date Submitted: 02/21/2016 07:58 AM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 61.7 
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Eric character analysis
-an inspector calls

        In An Inspector Calls Eric is the son of Arthur and Sybil Birling. He is in his mid twenties and is described to have a drinking problem. Eric along with his sister Sheila are the most changed by the end of the play and are the only two to take responsibility for their actions. Eric plays an important part in An Inspector Calls and could be what you describe as the tipping point of Eva smiths death, because the most dramatic event in her life would have been getting pregnant with Eric’s child which was what probably drove her to death. He has a very weak relationship with most of his family members and does not fit into his family very well, because of this he drinks which is what lead to him having a major part in the suicide of Eva Smith. Eric is also portrayed as an emotional character, who again is the most changed because of this.
  Eric is first described as an uneasy character, who doesn’t seem to fit into the Birling house. He is first introduced to the play when his father, Arthur, and Gerald Croft are talking and even before Eric speaks the stage directions describe how awkward and out of place he is, ‘not quite at ease, half shy, half assertive.’   This explains his body language which goes on to tell us that even with close friends and family Eric does not feel like he belongs. This shows a disconnection between him and his family. Furthermore Eric’s actions suggest that he is very different to his family which could then lead on to further problems such as his bad drinking habits, which then causes other problems, like a chain. The stage directions are the main clue to Eric’s discomfort in his situation, for example ‘but he checks himself’, ‘confused’, ‘uneasy, ‘bitterly’ and ‘miserably’. All of these stage directions indicate how uncomfortable Eric is in his own home, and for a person to be uncomfortable in their own home, surrounded by family, emphasises how self conscious Eric is.  


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