Mr Birling

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  • Mr Birling
    • The father of Sheila and Eric Birling and husband to Sybil Birling
    • Wealthy businessman and owns a factory in Brumley
    • Has been the city's Lord mayor and is a magistrate
    • Hosts a celebratory dinner for Sheila's engagement to Gerald Croft
    • Wants the Birlings and Crofts to unite in business as well as marriage
    • Keen to receive a knighthood
    • Believes that a man's responsibility is only to himself and his family and not to the wider community
    • Dismissed Eva Smith from her job at his factory two years previously
    • Tries to take control when the Inspector arrives but fails
    • Fears scandal
    • Mr Birling stands for all that is wrong with Edwardian Society
    • Pompous
      • "a hard-headed practical man of business"
    • Uncharitable
      • "Community and all that nonsense"
        • "the wretched girl's suicide"
    • Capitalist
      • "Lower costs and higher prices"
    • Adroit
      • "perhaps we may look forward to a time when Crofts and Birlings are no longer competing but working together"
    • Represents the bourgeoisie
    • "heavy-looking, rather portentous man in his middle fifties but rather provincial in his speech"

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