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A Passage to India

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Book Overview

This description may be from another edition of this product. What really happened in the Marabar caves? This is the mystery at the heart of E.M. Forster's 1924 novel, A Passage to India, the puzzle that sets in motion events highlighting an even larger...

Customer Reviews

6 ratings

Great book!

Getting a glimpse into the society and life of that era.

Herb's review

This book was for my wife for a class. It is fully footnoted and will be of great help for her in the class.

East and West Can Never Meet?

Almost a century after the book's publication the most crucial problems it discussed are as current as they were during Forster's life. The impossibility of communicating across the divide of culture, religion, and race, seems to be even more alive then when he saw it. The value of the novel lies not so much in representing it but in the fact that Forster offers a way out - personal contact. The story takes us to India of the 1920s - we follow the path of a young Englishwoman who goes to marry a British official but wants to know "the real India". This she never achieves but she gets to know something by far more important - herself. Her inept attempts at connecting with India and Indians make other characters of the novel learn more about themselves, force them out of safe shells in which they lived. The lesson is painful but at least for some of the characters opens the door to a better life. There is little chance people will suddenly like Muslims, Pakistanis, gays, lesbians, Moroccans, Turkish, Kurds etc etc - there is a chance (a very slim chance, Forster would be quick to add) that a specific American and a specific Muslim, a Turk and a Kurd, an Israeli and a Palestinian can be friends. The world may not want it, the people that surround them may not want it but the results depend on us alone. If we do not try we only have ourselves to blame.

old India

Wow. This book was written in the 1920's. Before Indian independence and before the separation of Hindu and Islam. When read with this knowledge it really is an incredible novel and explains (indirectly) the many differences between the Hindu and Muslim and British occupiers. It's essentially about the interaction of people from different cultures. I watched the David Lean film after reading the book and , although there were small differences, it was an excellend portrayal of the book. Why is it it in top 100 list? For me it's because of Forster's incredible descriptions and the way he paints a picture with these descriptions. Words to be tasted. Words to be scented. Sometimes the absence of description also adds to the mystery that is India. Wow.

passage to india

This is a classic. I read it years ago and had forgotten the lush beauty of his language, the acuity of his vision and the wisdom of his conclusions. My daughter and I visited India more than 20 years ago, and it brought back the smells, the poverty and the lush beauty of the country. What I remember most is how kind Indians were to us. Incredibly giving, you never see a car or even a scooter that isn't crammed to the hilt with people. They share. Something we Americans seem to've forgotten. Anyway, it's a lovely book and, as I recall, a lovely film.

Forster's Best Work, a masterpiece on so many levels

E.M. Forsters book "A passage to India" is indeed one of the best books I have ever read in my life. Forster shows great skill in bringing the tragic tale of an attempted friendship between Aziz and Fielding.The book revolves around what may be termed the secret understanding of the heart. This is an understanding of people, their feelings and their interaction with other humans. In a story which is not primarily political, Forster makes a political comment on what was happening in India at that time. The issue of the Marabar caves is not really an issue at all because even Forster says that it doesn't really matter what if anything happened in the caves, because it is the repercussions of what did of didn't happen that are important. I believe that the expedition into the Marabar caves merely amplified the emotions already inherent in the characters, for example Adela Quested tells us that she felt unwell since the teaparty with Fielding which took place long before the journey to the caves.Forster also presents us with well rounded characters except in the case of the Anglo-Indians, who are presented as tyrannical oppressors, and yet even they aren't all bad as they stand for values like honour and chivalry. What really annoys me about the Anglo-Indians is their high and mighty attitude, and pompous ways.I feel Forster uses character like Fielding, Moore, Godbole and Aziz to show us about true humanity.He doesn't pretend to understand India, it is a 'muddle' but through India he brings universal quandries and boundries to light.I recommend you read and reread this book as it is undoubtedly one of the best in english literature.
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