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The Mood in This Act Changes from Relaxed to Tense. Explore the Ways Priestley Transforms the Tone Throughout the Act.

  • Date Submitted: 10/19/2011 11:10 AM
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The mood in this act changes from relaxed to tense. Explore the ways Priestley transforms the tone throughout the act.

We have been studying a 20th century play called ‘An Inspector Calls’ wrote by J.B Priestly in 1945. I am going to state how the mood changes and what devices he uses to create tension and suspense. The main purpose of this play was not to entertain people but to put a point across.
Priestley’s theme was responsibility and how one person’s actions often have an effect on other people and the effect that might occur. He is trying to say that the community have a responsibility to look after others.

Priestley makes social criticism of the time in which the play is set by, when the inspector calls round he interrupts Billing’s speech about how people should look out for themselves and their family “a man has to make his own way-has to look after himself- and his family too, of course”. Its during this speech the door bell rings the reason for the inspector calling at this time is he is trying to challenge what Birling is saying, this shows Priestley does not agree with what Birling said and how in his community people are like and think like Birling.
One way that Priestley shows tension between Mr Birling and the inspector is through their different opinions; the inspector is there for and cares about the people in the community and actually wants to help, whereas Mr Birling doesn’t really care about anyone but himself, as he was talking about before the inspector came in he clearly states that “a man has to make his own way-has to look after himself- and his family too, of course” but it would seem to the audience that Mr Birling in face added “ and his family too” as an after thought, which would back up the fact that he only cares about himself.
Another way Priestly shows tension is through power or lack of it, for example, before the inspector comes on stage, Mr Birling seems to have all the power and even when the inspector comes on,...


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