What Is the Role of Inspector Goole in the Play: ‘an Inspector Calls’ by J.B Priestley?

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‘An Inspector Calls’ by J.B Priestley is a play that was written to not only show that everyone’s actions are interlinked, but also to express Priestley’s political and social views. Inspector Goole is the character who triggers all of the opinions and emotions to be exposed, and in this essay, I hope to show how the Inspector does this, and explain the techniques, use of language etc. that Priestley uses. Inspector Goole can be described as a catalyst – someone who speeds up and changes things around them, but without changing themselves. He changed the opinions of the entire Birling family, while showing them the ‘chain of events’ that led to Eva Smiths death, and how they were responsible for them. The Inspector remains the same person, with the same views, all the way through the play. As soon as the Inspector arrives at the Birling’s house, while they are celebrating Sheila and Gerald’s engagement, you can immediately notice the contrast in mood that Priestley sets. Clothing would help to show this difference if the play was on stage – Priestley has put that the Inspector should be wearing a dark, dull suit, but the others should in ‘evening dress’, which is not as formal. Priestley’s stage directions also note that the lighting should be ‘pink and intimate’, but when the Inspector arrives it should become ‘harder’ i.e. greater contrasts, and these would show how different the Inspector and the Birlings are. To begin with everybody is relaxed and the whole family are very happy, but when the Inspector turns up and starts to talk about the suicide, it becomes clear that everyone in the room is hoping that he will leave before long – Birling speaks ‘somewhat impatiently’ to the Inspector, as if to hurry him – so that they can get back to their party. But when it becomes apparent that he isn’t going to leave anytime soon, which is marked at the point when
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