Arthur Birling

Anisha Rai
Mind Map by Anisha Rai, updated more than 1 year ago
Anisha Rai
Created by Anisha Rai over 5 years ago


GCSE English Literature (An Inspector Calls) Mind Map on Arthur Birling, created by Anisha Rai on 04/21/2016.

Resource summary

Arthur Birling
  1. A successful businessman
    1. Well respected
      1. Owns a factory
        1. Head of the Birling family
          1. Only bothered about money and power and can't think about anything or anybody else
            1. Ambitious: "there's a very good chance of a knighthood"
              1. Selfish: "a man has to make his own way"
                1. Business-minded: "a hard-headed, practical man of business"
                  1. Anxious: "there'll be a public scandal - unless we're lucky"
                    1. Won't accept responsibility for the death of Eva smith
                      1. Theme of social responsibility
                        1. Sees other people as "cheap labour"
                        2. Obsessed with his status
                          1. When his good name is threatened he's terrified
                            1. Would "give thousands" (a bribe) to avoid scandal
                              1. He is a public figure in Brumley
                              2. Isn't used to being challenged
                                1. The Inspector barely says twenty words before Birling shows "a touch of impatience"
                                2. "Silly little war scares"
                                  1. Priestley uses dramatic irony to make his optimism seem foolish
                                    1. Undermines his authority
                                    2. Underneath it all, Birling is an anxious man
                                      1. Desperately tries to win the Croft's approval
                                        1. Tries to make himself seem important by drawing attention to his connections with influential people
                                        2. Uses authoritative language to be in control
                                          1. Priestley writes that Birling should be "provinvial in his speech", which means he has a regional accent
                                            1. Accent and social class were closely linked
                                              1. Makes it clear that he is a middle-class businessman, rather than upper-class
                                              2. Has the most continuous speech in the play
                                                1. "just let me finish, Eric"
                                                2. Repeatedly shouts "Rubbish!" to dismiss what other people have said
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