A Passage to India

by E. M. Forster

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Part III, Chapter XXXVII: Summary

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Last Updated March 22, 2023.

Fielding and Aziz take their final journey together in the Mau jungles as news of the Rajah's death is announced. Officially, the visit has been unsuccessful, as Godbole continually delays showing Fielding the high school, which Aziz reveals has been turned into a granary and only exists on paper.

Despite this, Fielding considers the visit a success in terms of rekindling his friendship with Aziz. They appreciate the vibrant surroundings and encounter a cobra. As they pause, Aziz shares a heartwarming letter he plans to send Miss Quested, expressing his gratitude. Fielding is happy and Aziz apologizes for his past doubts. Fielding encourages Aziz to talk to Stella, who also believes the cave incident and its consequences have been erased.

They both realize this is farewell, as there seems to be no room for their friendship anymore. Fielding has become part of Anglo-India and doubts he could defy his own people again as he did previously.

Fielding mentions the peace that Mau has brought to his wife and asks Aziz about the Krishna festival. Aziz knows little about it and shows disinterest in Hindu reactions. Fielding is curious about the spiritual aspect that attracts Ralph and Stella to Hinduism, but not its external forms.

Aziz resists Fielding's attempts to link him with Ralph and Stella, and adds a line in the letter to Miss Quested, stating that he will remember her alongside the revered Mrs. Moore. They debate politics on their return to Mau. Fielding argues that without the British, India would crumble. He accuses Aziz of abandoning medicine for charms and mocks the subject of his poems. In contrast, Aziz wants the British out of India and says that when England faces challenges in the next European war, it will be time for Indians.

Aziz vows that if his generation cannot expel the English, his children's generation will. The two men embrace, recognizing their shared desire for friendship.

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Part III, Chapter XXXVI: Summary