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An Inspector Calls - Character
Learn more about character in An Inspector Calls.

An Inspector Calls - Character

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1.
Mr Birling is described as 'portentous'. Which of the following quotes best demonstrates this characteristic?
"What's the matter with that child?"
"He had a bit of information, left by the girl, and made a few smart guesses"
"Rubbish! Do you know what happened to this girl after she left my works?"
"Perhaps I ought to warn you that he's an old friend of mine, and that I see him fairly frequently. We play golf together sometimes up at the West Brumley"
"Portentous" also means "pompous" and "self-important". Mr Birling wants to impress the Inspector with his status and connections in the town
2.
"The rude way he spoke to Mr Birling and me - it was quite extraordinary!" - Mrs Birling's exclamation illustrates which aspect of her character?
Her calm good sense
Her tender maternal nature
Her continual feeling of rage against the world
A firm belief in her own superiority
Mrs Birling's manner of speaking makes clear her awareness of the higher social status she occupies. This awareness is evident in her dealings with others, except with Gerald, who shares her status
3.
Which of the following does NOT describe the Inspector?
Self-interested
Firm
Purposeful
Determined
The Inspector is determined to make the Birling family and Gerald face the truth about their behavior. His manner is full of authority
4.
Which one of the following adjectives does NOT describe Eric?
Young
Stable
Immature
Petulant
Eric is very young, enjoys going out and drinking too much, and does not think much about the impact his actions have on others
5.
At the beginning of Act One, Mr Birling is described as being 'rather provincial in his speech'. What does this mean?
Mr Birling speaks in an aristocratic manner
Mr Birling has a Northern accent
Mr Birling uses a regional dialect in his speech
Mr Birling speaks English with a foreign accent
'Provincial' means from the provinces, i.e. he speaks in a regional dialect that is not considered as prestigious as an upper-class manner of speaking. This is one of the ways he shows himself to be his wife's social inferior
6.
Which of the following does NOT accurately describe Gerald?
Confident
Well-bred
A bit of a dandy
Capable of dishonesty
The introduction to Act One describes Gerald as "too manly to be a dandy". This places him in contrast to Eric
7.
Mrs Birling is described as being 'cold'. Which of the following quotations best demonstrates this quality?
"And in any case I don't suppose for a moment that we can understand why the girl committed suicide. Girls of that class - "
"No - Eric - please - I didn't know - I didn't understand - "
"Didn't I tell you? Didn't I say I couldn't imagine a real police inspector talking like that to us?"
"I beg your pardon!"
Mrs Birling's comment implies that she has no sympathy for the dead woman
8.
Which of the following best describes Sheila's character as she appears during the family celebration?
Empathetic
Depressive
Fearful
Playful
At the beginning, Sheila is often described as speaking half-playfully, half-seriously. Before the Inspector's arrival, her tone is teasing, playful and joyful
9.
Which of the following best describes Sheila's attitude at hearing of the events which befell Eva Smith?
Indifferent
Empathetic
Hysterical
Secretive
Sheila's display of emotions leads her parents to dismiss her as hysterical, yet her response to the death of Eva Smith is in reality an honest, humane and empathetic one
10.
Which of the following characteristics is evident in Gerald's treatment of Daisy Renton?
Warmth
Kindness
Selfishness
All of the above
Gerald admits he did not love Daisy, but he clearly treated her with some kindness. His relationship to Daisy shows that the powerful, even when well-meaning, can still have devastating effects on the lives of the poor and powerless
Author:  Sheri Smith

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