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Examining Who is Responsible for Eva's Death in Priestly's Play, An Inspector Calls

Good Essays
The play ‘An Inspector Calls’ is set in the North Midlands, the industrial city of Brumley in 1912. The play revolves around the death of a young girl named Eva Smith and the wealthy, middle class Birling family. The Birling family consists of four main members. In addition, there is Gerald Croft who is engaged to the daughter of the family, Sheila Birling, and the maid Edna who plays a small role in the play.
Throughout Priestley’s play, ‘An inspector calls’, a main theme runs about responsibility and differentiation between classes. Each character is accountable of doing something that brought about the death of Eva smith. All the characters contribute to her death in one way or the other, and all of them are at fault for the death of
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Mr Birling is quite selfish, and this reflects on his children, as he and his wife have brought them up that way.
Mrs Birling is also held responsible for the death of Eva Smith in various different ways. She is selfish as she won’t accept any blame for it, and once again, she is also doing the same as Mr Birling. She is taking the two generations and differentiating then according to how responsibilities are taken.
Mrs Birling is also plays a vital part in Eva’s death because she was selfish and shows no concern or consideration to Eva at the commission committee meeting. She also has the inability to put herself in other’s shoes. She was not supportive to a pregnant, unmarried woman. Instead, she was insensitive and didn’t approve of Eva. She says ‘I blame the young man who was the father of the child’, and this goes to show, she makes assumptions quickly, and doesn’t want to be blamed for anything.
She could’ve saved Eva and helped her, but she wasn’t the sort of person to sympathise and understand other classes, such as the lower class.
Gerald Croft plays a young, caring, polite man in the play, and he is engaged to Sheila Birling. He also contributed to death of Eva smith in a different way. Gerald’s personality was helpful to a certain extent. He knew Eva Smith as being named Daisy Renton. He saved her and let her
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