1. Edna is subservient and respectful, whilst working in the Birling household.


  1. Not much is known about Edna. She is deliberately silenced, because of low social standing.
  2. Mr Birling seems to dignify Edna and the cook. However, this is quickly attacked by Mrs Birling who has no respect for working class people.

Social Standing

  1. Edna is a _‘parlourmaid’ _which means that she works for the family like a servant. She is a lower class citizen and regarded as being Working Class.


  1. Edna only appears in Act One and introduces Gerald in Act Three.
  2. It can be said that she has the smallest role but her actions are extremely important in the outworking of the play.
  3. She is used as a vehicle to announce the Inspector’s call. She welcomes the Inspector and introduces him to the family.

Study Questions

  1. What is Edna’s job?
  2. Who does Edna introduce in Act One?
  3. Who does Edna introduce in Act Three?