A Passage to India by E. M. Forster

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Forster tries to shift the theme of the novel from history to philosophy. Do you agree? Give a reasoned answer.  

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Walter Fischer eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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E. M. Forster’s A Passage to India is historical in that it depicts conditions that existed in a particular period of time and in a particular place. It is also, of course, a novel. As with most novels that occur against a backdrop of historical relevance, A Passage to India is much more than a recitation or description of history. In fact, Forster’s classic is about a topic of continuing sociological and political relevance: colonialism and the confrontations that existed between the powerful and the oppressed.

At the heart of A Passage to India is the relationship between an English schoolteacher, Adela Quested, and a young Indian physician, Dr. Aziz, who takes it upon himself to show his native country to Adela and her travel companion, Mrs. Moore. The story’s main conflict revolves around a mysterious development in the darkened caves to which Dr. Aziz takes these proper Englishwomen on a tour. Forster takes great pains to illuminate the contrasts between civilizations with imperial...

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