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An inspector calls quotes
Terms in this set (59)
"Sinkable, absolutely unsinkable"
("I say there isn't a chance of war")
-An ignorant prediction by Mr Birling about the Titanic.
-The repetition and intensifier in this declarative sentence highlight his confidence in his prediction. This makes him seem more ignorant, naive and arrogant. Dramatic irony.
"Crofts and Birlings (...) are working together - for lower costs and higher prices."
-Mr Birling shows how his priority for the marriage is to earn more money and not love
-Juxtaposition of "lower" and higher". Hidden meaning behind "costs" is the wages of the lower classes.
-He is compromising his workers pay and lives to save money.
Birling: "a man has to mind his own business and look after himself and his own - and -"
( We hear the sharp ring of a door bell. Birling stops to listen)
-Mr Birling's capitalist ideas. They are interrupted by a doorbell. This implies that the visitor is going to challenge these capitalist views with socialist ideas.
-The adjective 'sharp implies something painful and intruding. It foreshadows the discomfort the characters will soon feel.
"All mixed up together like bees in a hive - community and all that nonsense"
Mr Birlings simile about socialism
-Simile agrees with birlings idea that it can be claustrophobic with them all living together.
-Bees all work together for one aim but they still have a higherarchy so birling is wrong.
-This demonstrates his ignorance which could indicate that what he thinks is right - capitalism - is actually wrong.
-Bees can be vicious?
-"nonsense" dismissive. Doesn't exist. OR he dismisses it quickly so is he jealous?
"this girl (...) she'd had a lot to say - far too much - so she had to go"
Mr Birling describes why he sacked Eva Smith
"I refused, of course."
Mr Birling shows the view at the time that a higher pay for the workers was impossible and ridiculous
"obviously it has nothing whatever to do with the wretched girl's suicide"
Mr Birling tries to convince the others that sacking Eva had nothing to do with her suicide
"If you don't come down sharply on these people, they'd soon be asking for the earth."
-Describes Birlings view on dealing with the lower class
-The adverb could perhaps link to when the inspector comes down sharply on Birling. It seems painful and harsh.
-"these people" stereotypes the lower class. It categorises them to dismiss them as anonymous and unimportant.
"I discharged her"
Pg.12 Birlings blunt description of sacking Eva Smith
(Pointing at Eric and sheila) "the famous younger generation who knows it all. And they can't even take a joke-"
//The telephone rings sharply//
-Mr Birling criticise Sheila and Eric for being too serious.
-This seems inappropriate and even shocking considering a young girl has just committed suicide.
-Birlings sarcasm actually highlights that maybe the younger generation do know it all
-Then the telephone stage directions
-"sharply". Adverb. Implies a sudden interruption bringing responsibility. A loud and harsh sound that highlights it to the audience. Similar to the doorbell.
Birling: "Good dinner too, Sybil. Tell cook from
Mrs Birling: " Arthur, you're not supposed to say such things-"
This exchange implies Birlings lack of high social class. An aristocrat would never compliment his own food. Mrs Birling correcting him shows her higher class background
//Mrs Birling enters, briskly and self-confidently, quite out of key with the little scene//
Stage directions that show that Mrs Birling is not intimidated by the inspector and is trying to put on a good front for the family.
//a rather cold woman and her husband's social superior//
Stage directions describing Mrs Birling at the beginning of the play.
(Staggered)" It isn't true"
(Staggered) "Well, really! Alderman Meggarty! I must say, we are learning something tonight.
Mrs Birling shows her lack of communication with her children and the outside world.
The verb in the stage directions emphasises her shock
"Unlike the other three, I did nothing I'm ashamed of (...) you have no power to make me change my mind"
Mrs Birling not only deflects responsibility but she also puts the responsibility onto her family.
Theme of responsibility
"She was claiming elaborate fine feelings and scruples that were simply absurd in a girl in her position"
Mrs Birling about Eva's claims to her
- "elaborate". adjective. Luxury. Suggests Eva gave too much detail to be believable for Mrs Birling
-"absurd" exaggerated. Insult to lower classes
-"girl" is belittling and "her position" implies her situation of being pregnant or her lower class status
"As if a girl of that sort would ever refuse money!"
Mrs Birling shows her negative stereotypical view of the lower class - especially girls
"Look - mummy - isn't it a beauty?"
Sheila's attitude before the inspector
"Mummy"= before the change. Seems shallow and immature
"By these girls aren't cheap labour - they're people"
Sheila challenges her Fathers socialist views and underpayment of the workers
"I felt rotten about it at the time and now I feel a lot worse. Did it make much difference to her?"
Sheila describing how she felt about causing Eva smiths sacking
-The question shows she wants reassurance and comfort as she knows the answer yet is afraid she is guilty OR it is an honest question which shows Sheila's naivety about the the hard labour market.
"No, because I remember what he said(...) what he made me feel. Fire and blood and anguish (...) I can't listen to any more of it"
"Yes, I insisted - it seems. I'm not very clear about it (...) I was in that state when a chap easily turns nasty"
Eric. Shows how he forced himself on Eva smith as he was drunk and angry.
"You killed her- and (..) my child - your own grandchild (...) you don't understand anything. You never did"
Eric shouting at Mrs Birling for what she did and her disunderstanding for everything
(Bursting out) "You're beginning to pretend as if nothing's really happened at all. And I can't see it like that. The girl's still dead, isn't she?"
Eric shouting at his parents after they believe no one has died and they have no responsibility.
-(Bursting out) verb, adverb -Eric can't contain his anger.
-"you're" and "I" are separate to show the difference between Eric and his parents
- "The girl's" - Eric is still disrespectful OR he uses his parents language to make them understand
-"still dead" - blunt like this inspector. Eric has taken on the inspectors role
- the rhetorical Question is used to persuade his parents. It points out how they have all still behaved badly and even if the inspector isn't real, they still must accept responsibili
(Distressed) My God!... I've suddenly realized (...) - that she's dead-"
Gerald shows shock. It implies he really did care for eva
"I didn't install her there so I could make love to her. I made her go (...) I was sorry for her"
Gerald defending giving Eva accommodation
- "install" seems controlling and objectifying
-" I made her go". He still forced her as he expects to have power and control over Eva
-" I was sorry for her" pity not love. Because of her class
(She did become his mistress so a,though his intentions were honourable, were his actions?)
"Everything's alright now Sheila(...) how about this ring?" (Sheila: "no not yet. It's too soon")
Gerald to Sheila.
He thinks nothing has changed between them.
Sheila says "not yet" but not no.
Birling: " (...) he's an old friend of mine (...) we play golf together"
Inspector: " i don't play golf"
Birling trying to show his social class to the inspector.
" She was here alone, friendless, almost penniless, desperate. She needed not only money, but advice,
sympathy, friendliness. (...) you slammed the door in her face"
Description of Eva smiths hardships and Mrs Birlings lack of help. The inspector to Mrs Birling
-The list of emotive adjectives emphasises his point
- repetition of "you" highlights how the inspector thinks it is all her fault. To persuade
- Verb "slammed" is agressive and shows her lack of care of the impact of not helping Eva
"We don't live alone. We are members of one body. We are responsible for each other"
Inspectors final speech. Socialist ideas
Metaphor for every part working together for one cause
"if men don't learn that lesson, then they shall be taught in fire and blood and anguish. Goodnight"
The inspectors final speech.
-"Fire..." dramatic irony - world wars? Emphasises inspector prescience
-Short sentence is blunt to create a sense of finality. It ends priestly's didactic tone
Inspector: "The girl discovered that the money you were giving her was stolen, didn't she."
Eric: "Yes (...) She wouldn't take anymore"
This conversation between the inspector and Eric implies that Eva had strong morals as she didn't take Eric's stolen money
"Still, I can't accept any responsibility. If we were all responsible for everything that happened to everybody we'd had anything to do with , it would all be very awkward, wouldn't it?"
Theme of responsibility
Mr Birling not accepting responsibility or change as he is stuck in his ways
(Miserably) "So I'm really responsible?"
Sheila doesn't understand that her actions have consequences. "?"
- yet she says it "miserably". Adverb shows she is changing slightly
"It's what happened to the girl and what we all did to her that matters(...) that's why I don't feel like sitting down and having a nice cosy talk"
Eric gets angry that everyone is acting like it never happened.
- Eric still calls her "the girl".
- "We all" implies he is taking responsibility for his own actions and everybody else.
-"Nice, cosy talk" is sacrcastic and angry. It links to the pink intimate light at the beginning of the play - the way things were at the start of the play they can't go back to.
"there are millions and millions and millions of Eva Smiths and John Smiths (...) all intertwined with our lives"
Theme of responsibility
The inspectors final speech
-The repetition emphasises the amount of people. It shows the inspectors passion and even reflects preiestlys passion.
-"Eva smith and John smith" are common lower class English names.
-Even in a capitalist society we are all in one community living together even if people don't realise it so we need to work together.
-Like a vine growing round a tree we all need support and to work together
Sheila: "If it didn't end tragically, then that's lucky for us. But it might have done"
-Sheila emphasises how her family need to change in case something bad does actually happen. Sheila sees the inspectors point clearly
-Theme of lack of responsibility
- "jovially" shows he's trying to get back to the beginning of the play but Sheila won't let him.
Mrs Birling: "When you're married, you will realise that men with important work to do (...) spend all their time and energy on the business. You'll have to get used to that, just as I had"
Sheila: " I don't believe I will"
Theme of gender inequality
Mrs Birling to Sheila
-Mrs Birling doesn't care, she is used to it
- it suggests how women couldn't have an opinion and must go with society or risk consequences
"I left 'em talking about clothes again (...) Women are potty about 'em "
Theme of gender
" she was young and pretty and warm-hearted - and intensely grateful. I became (...) the most important person in her life"
Theme of gender and social class
Gerald. Shows he saw Eva as dependent on him
Birling is annoyed at Eric and more worried about a "public scandal"
Eric: (Bursting out) "(...) You're (...) I can't (...) The girls still dead, isn't she?"
Theme of the generation gap
Birling and Eric argue about a public scandal and the fact a girl is dead
- Verb, adverb - he can't contain his anger
- pronouns are separate - different views
- "the girl's" is still disrespectful OR maybe he is is just using language his parents will understand?
- Blunt like the inspector
-Rhetorical question to persuade
"there'll be a public scandal - unless we're lucky - and who
here will suffer from that more than I will?"
Theme of reputation and social class
"Why shouldn't they try for higher wages? We
try for the highest possible prices(...) I'd have let her stay"
Pg 15. Eric challenges his fathers socialist views and money. He shows that he is different and would have acted differently
'used her as if she was an animal,
a thing, not a person'
The inspector says that Eric....
Social class and gender
"we're respectable citizens and not criminals"
Pg 20. Gerald shows his negative view of the lower class
"you used the power you had (...)to punish the girl"
Pg 22. Inspector to Sheila. She acted badly in getting Eva fired
"I'll never, never do it again to anybody"
Pg 22. Sheila takes responsibility and regret. She promises to not do it again
Sheila is very perceptive about the fact the inspector already knows everything.
"You mustn't try to build up a kind of wall between us and
Pg 21 Sheila. Them of class divides
- "wall" is metaphorical for the class divide.
-Sheila agrees with priestly ideas.
-"That girl" is dismissive, disrespectful and belittling.
-Shows she still has her old ideas even if she has somewhat changed
"No, he's giving us the rope - so that we'll hang
Pg. 22 Sheila realising that they are all implicated
(massively) "Public men, Mr Birling, have responsibilities as well as privileges."
Pg 36. The inspectors key socialist idea
Stage directions to let the audience know that this is a key point
"Go and look for the father of the child. It's his
responsibility" or " i blame the young man who was the father of the child"
Pg 39 Mrs Birling
By putting the responsibility on the father of the child Mrs Birling unknowingly puts responsibility straight on Eric, her own son
" You began to learn something. And now you've stopped. You're ready to go on in the same old way"
Theme of the generation gap and unchanging older Birlings
"He was our police Inspector all right"
Pg 51 Eric - "he was our........"
"you're not the kind of father a chap could go to when he's in trouble"
Pg 47 Eric points out how Birling is not much of a father
"there are a lot of young women living that sort of existence (..) Cheap labour. Ask your father."
Theme of social class
The inspector points out to Sheila that many people live like Eva Smith and that she should just look at her father.
//The lighting should be pink and intimate until the INSPECTOR arrives and then it should be brighter and harder.//
Lighting described on page 1
Pink + intimate seems cosy. Rose tinted glasses - the Birlings only see the positive things
Bright per and harder shows how the inspector is interrogating them and allowing them to see the truth
"(...) your mother - Lady Croft ... feels you might have done better for yourself socially"
Theme of social class
Mr Birling to Gerald about his mothers view on the marriage
"Now, Sheila, I'm not defending him. But you must understand that a lot of young men- "
Pg 35 Birling
Theme of gender inequality. Birling defends Gerald for having an affair
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