Inspector Calls

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Mr and Mrs Birling do not care about their involvement in the death of Eva smith. They do not care about responsibility. How far do you agree that responsibility is the major theme in the play? JB priestly in ‘An inspector calls’ provides a play that will not only entertain but a play that will deliver a message of the injustice in society, class, and social responsibility. I intend to explore how Priestly conveys these impacting themes throughout the play and how he uses the main characters to represent his powerful views about responsibility. Responsibility is the central theme in the play, and is presented throughout the duration of the play. At the beginning of the play Mr Birling gives a speech about his interpretation of responsibility, “A man has to make his own way, look after himself and mind his own business.” This contrasts greatly with the inspectors speech towards the end of the play. Birlings view is about individual responsibility where as the Inspectors view is all about collective responsibility and looking after the lower class. Mr and Mrs Birling do not understand that they have taken part in killing Eva smith, they have no empathy for her and are incapable of change. After the inspector informs Mr Birling that Eva Smith has died an agonising death Mr Birling is incredibly insensitive towards the situation and is very flippant, “Yes, yes. Horrid business.” Mr Birling is stubborn, and does not want to put his pride on hold to accept his responsibility, “Still, I can’t accept any responsibility.” Through the character of Mr Birling Priestly conveys that the upper class have a narrow view of what it means to be responsible, all Birling thinks it means to be responsible to make a success of his business. Mrs Birling is no more mature towards responsibility than Mr Birling, “Simply because I have done nothing wrong.” Mrs Birling has no remorse and does not feel like she had any part to play in killing Eva. The inspector attempts to make them...
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