A Passage to India Questions and Answers
by E. M. Forster

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What causes Adela’s breakdown? Why does she accuse Aziz? What qualities enable her to admit the truth at the trial?

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in the first part of the novel, Adela develops feelings of confusion because of traveling to India, settling into a new culture, and having issues with her fiancé. The trip by ship to India was long and probably somewhat stressful; it's stressful enough traveling by plane, but in A Passage to India travelers must go by ship and it takes a lot longer. During the trip, Adela was first exposed to the other British colonists, many of whom were already accustomed to living in India. Their influence on Adela was negative and added to her confusion and stress.

Once in India, Adela finds the culture and the physical environment very different from what she is used to. She experiences severe culture shock, made worse by the other colonists' negativity towards the country and the Indian people, for example by not allowing them access to the Chandrapore club. Forster describes the frenetic atmosphere in Chandrapore, with a lot of emphasis on the heat and light of the sun, and on the sky and filth and...

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