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Which Characters Change Most Throughout 'an Inspector Calls' and Why Do the Change?

  • Date Submitted: 10/31/2010 05:51 AM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 74.7 
  • Words: 1133
  • Essay Grade: 3,00 /5 (1 Graders)
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Which characters change the most through the course of the play and why do they change?

This essay will be looking at which characters change and why throughout the play 'An Inspector Calls'. 'An Inspector Calls' was written in 1945 by J.B. Priestley and is set in the spring of 1912. The play is about the Birlings, an upper class family who are paid an unexpected visit from the mysterious Inspector Goole. They are thoroughly interrogated by Goole, and eventually all end up having some sort of link to the death of Eva Smith, a pregnant ex-worker of Mr Birling’s factory.
  The first character we will be looking at is Sheila, Mr and Mrs Birling’s daughter. At the beginning of 'An Inspector Calls', Sheila is a juvenile and ‘very pleased with life’. This shows that she has led a sheltered and pampered existence. Sheila also has a childish side and is known to bully her brother Eric. She uses ‘You’re squiffy.’ As a retort when Eric suddenly interrupts a conversation by laughing. This shows that she can be quite mean when she wants to be. When the inspector visits and Sheila’s involvement with the death is revealed, she feels instant remorse. We can see this from the line ‘Don’t you understand? If I could help her now I would-’. She is miserable and distressed as she explains what she did, and it is clear that she is dreadfully sorry. Sheila is not made to feel any better by the Inspector, who is quick to remark ‘It’s too late. She’s dead.’ It is apparent that the Inspector’s visit impacts Sheila hugely and that she is starting to take responsibility for her actions. ‘I know. I had her turned out of her job. I started it.’ This shows that she is a changed person. At the beginning of the play, Sheila denied having anything to do with it, but now her social conscience has been awakened and she sees other people’s opinions as valid. She is no longer in the own personal ‘bubble’ where she is all that matters, and the Inspector’s visit seems to have brought her into the...


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