A Passage to India by E. M. Forster

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Sample Essay Outlines

Topic #1
In a 1938 essay, Forster declared, “...if I had to choose between betraying my country and betraying my friend, I hope I should have the guts to betray my country.” Demonstrate the ways in which Fielding’s actions in the novel are consistent with this statement.

Outline
I. Thesis Statement: A Passage to India illustrates the paramount value of friendship, even when it conflicts with group loyalty

II. Fielding’s friendship with Aziz must surmount many obstacles
A. The cultural and ethnic gap between them, reinforced by social structures
B. Many acquaintances attempt to undermine the friendship
C. They frequently misunderstand each other

III. Although other Anglo-Indians brand Fielding as a traitor, he sides with Aziz
A. He believes Aziz is innocent
B. He defies his own group to defend Aziz

IV. The friendship between Aziz and Fielding survives rumors and years of separation
A. After they are reunited, Aziz abandons his suspicious attitude
B. Fielding forgives him
C. Their friendship is so strong that it allows for conflict based on their differing group identities
D. Although the time and place will not allow their friendship to flourish, both men acknowledge the strength of their bond

Topic #2
Miss Quested repeatedly says that the mystery of what happened in the caves will never be solved. Some readers believed that Aziz might have been guilty of an assault, or at least a sexual advance, on her. Use the facts presented in the novel, and its narrative technique, to refute this charge.

Outline
I. Thesis Statement: A close reading of A Passage to India demonstrates that, whether or not Miss Quested was assaulted in the caves, Aziz was not the perpetrator.

II. Mrs. Moore says that it is not in Aziz’s character to do such a thing
A. Aziz’s idea of hospitality would prevent him from insulting a guest
B. Aziz is too practical and unsentimental about sex to take a risk
C. Miss Quested states that only Mrs. Moore knows the answer

III. It is unlikely because Aziz has other sexual outlets,...

(The entire section is 679 words.)