An Inspector Calls
by J.B. PRIESTLEY
Priestley’s play, in which a police inspector knocks at the door of the smug Birling family as they celebrate the engagement of their daughter, shows how each of the Birlings are implicated in the death of a young woman.
It is a vivid and expressionistic piece of meta-theatre and revels in the frolicsome games with time and metaphysics that Priestley enjoyed playing in his work.
The play is set in 1912, just as the First World War is looming, which would put an end to a whole comfortable middle-class way of life. But it was written in 1945, at the end of a Second World War that seemed likely to usher in another new era of social and cultural change. It offers a passionate plea for a more just and compassionate society.
LYN GARDNER, The Guardian
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