A Passage to India Part II, Chapters XV – XVII: Questions and Answers
by E. M. Forster

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Part II, Chapters XV – XVII: Questions and Answers

Study Questions
1. Why does Adela not want to break her engagement to Heaslop, even though she has realized that they don’t love each other?

2. What train of thought leads her to ask Aziz how many wives he has? Why is Aziz shocked by it? Is she aware of his shock?

3. Why does Aziz strike the guide?

4. What is Aziz’s reaction when he hears that Miss Quested and Miss Derek have driven back to Chandrapore?

5. What causes the awkwardness between Mrs. Moore and Fielding? How does Aziz feel about it?

6. Why does Aziz conceal the truth about what happened in the caves?

7. Why does Mrs. Moore feel apathetic and cynical?

8. Why is Fielding annoyed with Miss Derek and Miss Quested?

9. Why does Fielding prevent Aziz from escaping arrest?

10. What forms of madness does Fielding perceive after the arrest? Does he understand madness?

Answers
1. Miss Quested reflects that marriage does not seem to depend on love. There is also the probability that breaking the engagement would cause her social embarrassment.

2. Adela has been musing about love and marriage herself, so it is natural for her to ask Aziz if he is married. It occurs to her that Muslims may have more than one wife, she then asks Aziz how many he has. For Aziz, having more than one wife is an old-fashioned custom of which he, as a modern Muslim, is ashamed. Adela is unaware that she has offended him.

3. Aziz strikes the guide because he feels frightened and worried and chooses to blame him for not looking after Miss Quested.

4. He is relieved, assuming that they have obeyed the same kind of impulse that he has often followed.

5. Mrs. Moore is suffering from her experience of despair. Fielding is annoyed with himself and chooses to include Mrs. Moore in his self-blame. They do not know each other well and feel awkward at finding themselves together on account of an Indian.

6. Aziz has never been particularly...

(The entire section is 491 words.)