An Inspector Calls

how does Priestly present the Birling family at the start of An Inspector calls?

give evidence.

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Priestly presents the family as happy and content..... leaving us to expect a family drama.

the author begins with " heavily comfortable" "dining room of a fairly large suburban house belonging to a prosperous manufacturer " here the author presents this family as a rich family belonging to the upper class, however priestly manages to show us that they are uncomfortable with each other, he shows us how this house is "not cosy and home like" and the members of the house lack the close family connections and are rather shallow.

The begining stage directions talks about how they are seated at the table which shows the hierachy of each person. Arthur and his wife ar seated at either end of the table to show their superiority and control. Gerald and Sheila are seated upstage, so we can acknowdge that most of the attention would be on them and Eric is seated downstage which shows that he is of less importance in the family.

Arthur is described as a posh and arrogant snob

Sybil is described as socially superior to her husband, but is also an arrogant snob

Sheila is described as childish and nice

Gerald is described as arrogant and charming

Eric is described as a shy recluse who contrasts to his father.


We can identify that the Birlings are of a higher class "fairly large suburban house... good solid furniture", Subarban house portrays that the Birlings are slightly isolated from the hustle and bustle of the city."heavily comfortable" shows how they have wealth and luxuries and are rich, however "not cosy and homelike" shows us how the Birling House is quite cold and is like one of those ikea displays where it may look nice but hasnt any warmth. "a small table with a telephone" They have wealth and are social, "fireplace" means that they can afford coal.


an inspector calls