A Passage to India

by E. M. Forster

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Part I, Chapters IV – VI: Questions and Answers

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Study Questions
1. Why do the other Indians allow Nawab Bahadur to convince them to go to the party?

2. What information does Mrs. Turton give Mrs. Moore about the rank of Englishwomen in India in relation to Indian women?

3. Why does Mrs. Turton know only the imperative forms of Urdu?

4. What does Heaslop believe is the purpose of the English in India?

5. What does Mrs. Moore believe their purpose is?

6. Why doesn’t Aziz go to the party?

7. What proves Major Callendar’s ignorance of Indian life?

8. Why is it offensive to Dr. Panna Lal when Aziz hits the Brahminy bull with his polo mallet?

9. In what ways are Aziz and Heaslop similar in their attitudes toward work?

10. What are Aziz’s feelings as he gazes at the photograph of his dead wife?

1. As a wealthy landowner, the Nawab has more prestige than the others and is considered a leader.

2. Mrs. Turton tells Mrs. Moore that she—and by implication, any Englishwoman—is superior in rank to any Indian woman except one or two of the Ranis, who are equal in rank to the Anglo-Indians.

3. Mrs. Turton is accustomed to speaking the language only to servants and has never bothered to study it for any other purpose.

4. He feels the English are in India to do justice and keep the peace. He believes he is in India “to work and hold this wretched country by force.”

5. Mrs. Moore believes the English “are in India to be pleasant.” As God has put people on earth for the same purpose.

6. It is the anniversary of his wife’s death and he is saddened by his reverie about her. He is afraid the Anglo-Indian women will make fun of his sorrow.

7. When Major Callendar begins to rebuke Aziz for not arriving on time the previous week, the Major cannot understand why Aziz’s bicycle should have broken down in front of the Cow Hospital. It doesn’t occur to him that instead of being at home, Aziz might have been visiting friends, and that this activity indicates the weaving of a new social fabric among the Indians.

8. The Brahminy bull, and cows in general, are held sacred by the Hindus.

9. They both work hard and are often not recognized or rewarded for it, Heaslop by the Indians, Aziz by the Anglo-Indians.

10. Tears flow from Aziz’s eyes as he gazes at his wife’s photograph. He feels self-pity as well, and attempts unsuccessfully to remember his wife.

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