Its basically 'explain how priestley develops the theme of responsibility in the play' 30 marks.
I'd start off by stating all the characters & how they are irresponsible, e.g. mr birling for not allowing eva higher wages, eric for getting eva pregenant, mrs birling for not helping her
then i'd discuss capitalism v socialism and how the inspector represents socialism and how he is getting everyone to be responsible
finally id talk about eva smith and how responsibility is presented via eva because she represents all the working class people and if others are irresponsible then people can be negatively affected
i also wrote a short para i would incorporate this into the essay:
The theme of social responsibility is developed by Priestly by introducing a very capitalist-sided family only fighting for themselves (as portrayed by Mr. Birling's mindset) and then brings in the consequences of having such an ignorant/selfish attitude. The use of Eva Smith as a character helps create the theme of social responsibility as she represents all of the working class people and channels how everyone's lives are entwined and that the end result of everyone's actions affects other people (in Eva's case, the end result was her death). In addition to this, responsibility is explored by Priestly as Inspector Goole plays devil's advocate and is introduced in the play in order to get Priestly's views across, specifically that we are 'all members of one body' and everyone is responsible for each other. Furthermore, social responsibility is developed in the play through the different attitudes of the characters. For example, Sheila starts off in the play as a very materialistic and ignorant girl (as she got Eva sacked from Milwards), however, as the play unfolds and she realizes the mistakes she has made, she takes her actions into consideration and therefore becomes more socially aware and answerable to her actions. The contrast between the rich and the poor also help to add to the theme of social responsibility as the Inspector points out that, regardless of how wealthy someone is, they still share equal responsibility for others.
what about you guys?
Planning your answer
Have a go at planning and writing your answer away from the computer, before coming back to check your answer against ours. To help you, print off the skeleton answer below and use it as a guide.
Para 1: Introduction - Mrs Birling
- Explain Mrs Birling's role in Eva's death and discuss whether she is to blame.
Para 2 - Mr Birling
- Look at Mr Birling's part in the tragedy and comment on the extent of his responsibility.
Para 3 - Sheila
- Explore Sheila's part and, as before, comment on the extent of her responsibility.
Para 4 - Gerald
- Now do the same for Gerald...
Para 5 - Eric
Para 6 - Conclusion
- Weigh up each character's responsibility and decide whether Mrs Birling is more to blame than anyone else.
Once you've completed your own essay, hit Next to compare it with ours...
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