Characters Discussed (Cyclopedia of Literary Characters, Revised Third Edition)
Dr. Aziz (ah-ZEEZ), an amiable, sensitive, and intelligent young Moslem doctor in Chandrapore, India. Ignored and snubbed by the English colony, he nevertheless becomes friendly with three English newcomers to India—Mr. Fielding, Mrs. Moore, and Miss Quested. When he takes them on a tour of the sinister Marabar Caves, Miss Quested becomes separated from the party, and later she accuses him of attempted rape. Jailed and humiliated, he becomes markedly anti-British. After Miss Quested withdraws her charge at his trial, he wants to collect damages, but Fielding dissuades him. Suspicious of Fielding’s motives, he breaks off the friendship. Two years later, the two men meet again, and each realizes that any true communion between them is impossible because of their racial allegiances.
Cecil Fielding, the principal of the Government College, a middle-aged, maverick intellectual who resists the herd instinct of his fellow Englishmen. He has Indian friends; he defends Aziz against the English bigots, and when Miss Quested is ostracized after the trial, he offers her the protection of his home. Tired of the whole situation, he takes a trip to England, marries, and then returns to India, where he finds Aziz less cordial than before.
Adela Quested, a priggish young woman who goes to India to marry Ronald Heaslop; she announces that she is eager to see the real India. Her trip to the Marabar Caves proves disastrous. Thinking that she has been the victim of an attempted attack, she accuses Aziz; however, she shows courage by retracting the charge at his trial. The scandal ruins her prospective...
(The entire section is 707 words.)
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