J.B. Priestley wrote the play “An Inspector Calls” in 1945 and set it in 1912. These dates are both relevant because he wrote his play in a world emerging from the Second World War, at a time when people were getting nostalgic about pre-world war one. Priestley used his play to try and show people that the idea of a community in 1912 was gradually being washed away by the upper classes and that the world needed to change rather than return to the egotistical society that existed in pre war England.
Through his play Priestley endeavoured to convey a message to the audiences, that we could not go on being self obsessed and that we had to change our political views. He used the Birling family as an example of the Capitalist family that was common amongst the higher classes in 1912, who took no responsibility for other people and he showed this with the power of Socialism, represented by the inspector; the uneasy facade put on by the Birling family to cover up their real flaws and how they have treated those whom they considered to be lower class could not stand up to any scrutiny without shame for what had happened, showing that they know they have been wrong.