An Inspector Calls

The Interconnected Nature of Society in An Inspector Calls 10th Grade

In An Inspector Calls, J.B. Priestley expresses the importance of the interconnected nature of society through his exploration of how his characters react to their responsibility; this theme is also addressed through ideas of society present both at the time of writing and when the play was set. Priestley chiefly uses the character of Inspector Goole to convey the theme of interconnectedness and responsibility, who catechises to the Birlings the belief that, ‘We are members of one body. We are responsible for each other’. Through statements such as this, the play demonstrates how the Inspector believes that every member of society is affected by every other.

There is no way to escape association with others, as the Birlings believed at the beginning of the play. The short, definitive sentences create an imposing and authoritative tone that matches the Inspector’s ‘massiveness’, as he is originally described. The Inspector continues to warn that ‘if men will not learn [this] lesson, then they will be taught it in fire and blood and anguish.’ This reinforces the Inspector’s message and carries a powerful and threatening tone that confronts both the Birlings and the audience alike. The use of a syndetic list of three, ‘fire and...

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