Honours, Honours 4rth Year, Twentieth Century Novel

A Passage to India By E M Foster Summary & Analysis

A Passage to India Summary

E.M. Forster’s A Passage to India concerns the relations between English and therefore the native population of India during the colonial period during which Britain ruled India. The novel takes place primarily in Chandrapore, a city along the Ganges notable just for the nearby Marabar caves. the most character of the novel is Dr. Aziz, a Moslem doctor in Chandrapore and a widower. After he’s summoned to the Civil Surgeon’s home only to be promptly ignored, Aziz visits an area Islamic temple where he meets Mrs. Moore, an elderly British woman visiting her son, Mr. Heaslop, who is that the City Magistrate. Although Aziz reprimands her for not taking her shoes off within the temple before realizing she has actually observed this rule, the 2 soon find that they need much in common and he escorts her back to the club.

Back at the club, Mrs. Moore meets her companion, Adela Quested, who will likely marry her son. Adela complains that they need seen nothing of India, but rather English customs replicated abroad. Although a couple of persons make racist statements about Indians, Mr. Turton, the Collector, proposes having a Bridge Party (to bridge the gulf between east and west). When Mrs. Moore tells her son, Ronny, about Aziz, he reprimands her for associating with an Indian. When Mr. Turton issues the invitations to the Bridge Party, the invitees suspect that this is often a political move, for the Collector wouldn’t behave so cordially without a motive, but accept the invitations despite the suspicion.

For Adela and Mrs. Moore, the Bridge Party may be a failure, for less than a get few English guests behave well toward the Indians. Among these is Mr. Fielding, the schoolmaster at the govt College, who suggests that Adela meet Aziz. Mrs. Moore scolds her son for being impolite to the Indians, but Ronny Heaslop feels that he’s not in India to be kind, for there are more important things to do; this offends her sense of Christian charity.

Aziz accepts Fielding’s invitation to tea with Adela, Mrs. Moore, and Professor Narayan Godbole. During tea, they discuss the Marabar Caves, while Fielding takes Mrs. Moore to ascertain the school. Ronny arrives to seek out Adela alone with Aziz and Godbole and later chastises Fielding for leaving an Englishwoman alone with two Indians. However, he reminds Ronny that Adela is capable of creating her own decisions. Aziz plans a picnic at the Marabar Caves for Miss Quested and Mrs. Moore. Adela tells Ronny that she is going to not marry him, but he nevertheless suggests that they take a car trip to ascertain Chandrapore. The Nawab Bahadur, a crucial local figure, agrees to require them. During the trip, the car swerves into a tree and Miss Derek, an Englishwoman passing by at the time, agrees to require them back to town. However, she snubs the Nawab Bahadur and his chauffeur. Adela speaks to Ronny and tells him that she was foolish to mention that they ought to not be married.

Both Aziz and Godbole fall sick after the party at Mr. Fielding’s home, so Fielding visits Aziz, and that they discuss the state of politics in India. Aziz shows Fielding an image of his wife, a big event considering his Islamic background and a crucial demonstration of their friendship.

Aziz plans the expedition to the Marabar Caves, considering every minute detail because he doesn’t wish to offend English ladies. During the day once they are to embark. Mohammed Latif, a lover of Aziz, bribes Adela’s servant, Antony, to not continue the expedition, for he is a spy for Ronny Heaslop. Although Aziz, Adela, and Mrs. Moore arrive at the railway station on time, Fielding and Godbole miss the train due to Godbole’s morning prayers. Adela and Aziz discuss her marriage, and she or he fears she is going to become a narrow-minded Anglo-Indian like the opposite wives of British officials. once they reach the caves, a definite echo in one among them frightens Mrs. Moore, who decides she must leave immediately. The echo terrifies her, for it gives her the sense that the universe is chaotic and has no order.

Aziz and Adela still explore the caves, and Adela realizes that she doesn’t love Ronny. However, she doesn’t think that this is often reason enough to interrupt off her engagement. Adela leaves Aziz, who goes into a cave to smoke, but when he exits he finds their guide alone and asleep. Aziz searches for Adela, but only finds her broken field glasses. Finally, he finds Fielding, who received the subside Miss Derek’s care, but he doesn’t know where Adela is. When the group returns to Chandrapore, Aziz is arrested for assaulting Adela.

Fielding speaks to the Collector about the charge and claims that Adela is mad and Aziz must be innocent. The Collector feels that this is often inevitable, for disaster always occurs when English and Indians interact socially. Fielding requests that he see Adela, but McBryde, the police superintendent, denies this request. Fielding acts as Aziz’s advocate, explaining such things as why Aziz would have the sector glasses. Aziz hires as his lawyer Armitrao, a Hindu who is notoriously anti-British. Godbole leaves Chandrapore to start a high school in Central India.

The Anglo-Indians rally to Miss Quested’s defense and call a gathering to debate the trial. Fielding attends and makes the error of truly about her by name. The Collector advises all to behave cautiously. When Ronny enters, Fielding doesn’t stand as a symbol of respect. Mr. Turton demands an apology, but Fielding merely resigns from the club and claims he will resign from his post if Aziz is found guilty.

Adela remains within McBryde’s bungalow, where the lads are too respectful and therefore the women too sympathetic. She wishes to ascertain Mrs. Moore, who kept away. Ronny tells her that Fielding wrote her a letter to her pleading Aziz’s case. Adela admits to Ronny that she has made an error in which Aziz is innocent. When Adela sees Mrs. Moore, she is morose and detached. She knows that Aziz is innocent and tells Adela that directly. Mrs. Moore wishes to go away to India, and Ronny agrees, for she is doing nobody any good by remaining. Lady Mellanby, the wife of the Lieutenant-Governor, secures Mrs. Moore’s quick passage out of India.

During the trial, the Indians within the crowd jeer Adela for her appearance, and Mahmoud Ali, one among Aziz’s lawyers, claims that Mrs. Moore was sent away because she would clear Aziz’s name. When McBryde asks Adela whether Aziz followed her, she admits that she made an error. Major Callendar attempts to prevent the proceedings on medical grounds, but Mr. Das, the judge, releases Aziz. After the trial, Adela leaves the courtroom alone as a riot foments. Fielding finds her and escorts her to the school where she is going to be safe. Disaster is averted only Dr. Panna Lal, who was to testify for the prosecution, publicly apologizes to Aziz and secures the discharge of Nureddin, a prisoner rumored to possess been tortured by English.

At the school, Fielding asks Adela why she would make her charge, but she cannot provides a definite answer. He suggests that she was either assaulted by the guide or had a hallucination. Adela seems to believe that she had a hallucination, for she thinks she had a hallucination of a wedding proposal when there was none. Fielding warns her that Aziz is extremely bitter. Ronny arrives and tells them that his mother died stumped.

After a victory banquet for Aziz, he and Fielding discuss his plans. Fielding implores Aziz to not sue Adela, for it’ll show him to be a gentleman, but Aziz claims that he’s fully anti-British now. Fielding reminds Aziz what a momentous sacrifice Adela made, for now, she doesn’t have the support nor friendship of the opposite English officials. Fielding tells Aziz that Mrs. Moore is dead, but he doesn’t believe him. The death of Mrs. Moore results in suspicion that Ronny had her killed for trying to defend Aziz. Although there was no wrongdoing within the situation, Ronny nevertheless feels guilty for treating his mother so poorly. Adela decides to go away to India and not marry Ronny.

Fielding gains a new respect for Adela for her humility and loyalty as he attempts to influence Aziz to not take action against Adela. Adela leaves India and vows to go to Mrs. Moore’s other children (and Ronny’s step-siblings) Stella and Ralph. Aziz hears rumors and begins to suspect that Fielding had an affair with Adela. He believes these rumors out of his cynicism concerning attributedue to this suspicion, the friendship between Aziz and Fielding begins to chill, even after Fielding denies the affair to Aziz. Fielding himself leaves Chandrapore to travel, while Aziz remains convinced that Fielding will marry Adela Quested.

Forster resumes the novel a while later within the town of Mau, where Godbole now works. Godbole currently takes part during a Hindu birthing ceremony with Aziz, who now works during this region. Fielding visits Mau; he has married, and Aziz assumes that his bride is Miss Quested. Aziz stopped corresponding with Fielding when he received a letter which stated that Fielding married someone Aziz knows. However, he didn’t marry Adela, as Aziz assumes, but rather Mrs. Moore’s daughter, Stella. When Fielding meets with Aziz and clears up this misunderstanding, Aziz remains angry, for he has assumed for such an extended time that Fielding married his enemy.

Nevertheless, Aziz goes to the guest house where Fielding stays and finds Ralph Moore there. His anger at Fielding cools when Ralph invokes the memory of Mrs. Moore, and Aziz even takes Ralph boating on the river so that they will observe the local Hindu ceremonies. Their boat, however, crashes into one carrying Fielding and Stella. After this comical event, the ill will between Aziz and Fielding fully dissipates. However, they realize that due to their different cultures they can’t remain friends and part from each other cordially.

A Passage to India

 

A Passage to India Character Analysis

Mahmoud Ali
Mahmoud Ali is a lawyer and friend of Aziz and Hamidullah. He is one of the defense attorneys at Aziz’s trial. He is excitable and extremely anti-British. His emotional reactions and his hatred do not serve him well in the courtroom.

Amritrao
Amritrao is a renowned British-educated barrister who comes to Chandrapore to defend Aziz.

Dr. Aziz
Dr. Aziz is a young Indian Moslem doctor, a widower with three children. He is excitable, emotional, and talkative, with a desire to please. He does not always tell the truth and has a habit of believing whatever is most convenient or attractive to him. He is extremely sensitive and quick to take offense. He loves to recite and write poetry. Aziz arranges an expedition to the Marabar Caves for Mrs. Moore and Adela Quested, but the expedition ends in disaster when Adela accuses him of assaulting her in one of the caves. After the charges are withdrawn, the embittered Aziz moves to another province, away from British India. He meets his friend Fielding again, but their friendship, which has been ruptured by the turn of events, never recovers its former intimacy.

The Nawab Bahadur
The Nawab Bahadur is a wealthy Indian landowner and philanthropist. Initially, he is favorable to the British, who gave him his title. But later he finances Aziz’s defense, and when passions are running high immediately after the trial, he renounces his title and becomes plain Mr. Zulfiqar.

Major Callendar
Major Callendar is the Civil Surgeon in Chandrapore and Aziz’s boss. He is an arrogant, unpleasant man who does little to disguise his anti-Indian feelings.

Das
Das is the assistant magistrate who presides over Aziz’s trial. He is a fair-minded man who does his best to assert his authority over the proceedings.

Miss Derek
Miss Derek is a free-spirited, good-humored young Englishwoman who works for a Maharajah in an Indian-ruled state far from Chandrapore. She takes leave from her job whenever she feels like it, taking the Maharani’s car with her. Later, she has an affair with McBryde.

Cyril Fielding
Cyril Fielding is the principal of the government college near Chandrapore. He does not share the prejudice that the other English people show toward Indians, and he is popular with his students. However, the English people are aware that he is not really “one of them,” and are consequently wary of him. Fielding forms a friendship with Aziz and is convinced that Aziz is innocent of the charge brought against him. Fielding tries to discover the facts of the case and joins forces with the Indians who conduct Aziz’s defense. Fielding’s friendship with Aziz cools, however, and Aziz later breaks off all contact with him. At the end of the novel, after Fielding returns to India from England with his new wife, he and Aziz are finally reconciled, although without their former intimacy.

Professor Godbole
Professor Godbole is an elderly Brahmin, a member of the highest Hindu caste. He teaches at Government College. He is learned and spiritually-minded, tending to stand aloof from human affairs.

Hamidullah
Hamidullah is Aziz’s uncle and a friend of Fielding. He is the leading barrister (lawyer) in Chandrapore. He was educated in England, and he believes it is possible to be friends with the English.

Ronny Heaslop
Ronny Heaslop is the City Magistrate of Chandrapore and the son of Mrs. Moore. He is relatively new at his post, having been in the country only one year, but he has already inherited the usual intolerant English attitudes to the Indians. According to Adela Quested, who briefly becomes engaged to marry him, Ronny thinks he is always right and is complacent.

Dr. Panna Lal
Dr. Panna Lal is Aziz’s colleague. He is a Hindu, from a low-class background, and Aziz does not respect him. In his turn, Lal dislikes Aziz and is willing to testify for the prosecution against him at the trial. After the case is dropped Lal begs Aziz for forgiveness.

Mr. McBryde
Mr. McBryde is the District Superintendent of Police. He is a well educated, reflective man who treats Aziz with courtesy at the time of his arrest. However, McBryde cloaks his racism in theories about what he thinks are Oriental psychology and pathology. For example, he thinks that all “natives” are criminals at heart because they live south of latitude 30.

Mrs. Moore
Mrs. Moore is an elderly Englishwoman who visits India accompanied by Adela Quested. The purpose of her visit is to offer Adela and Mrs. Moore’s son, Ronny Heaslop, the chance to become engaged. At first, Mrs. Moore is amiable and interested in her surroundings. She makes friends with Aziz when they happen to meet at a mosque. But after her expedition to the caves, she becomes morose and loses interest in life. She knows Aziz is innocent but she does nothing to help him. She dies at sea on her way home to England.

Ralph Moore
Ralph Moore is Mrs. Moore’s son. He is a polite, sensitive young man, who accompanies his sister to Mau and meets Aziz.

Stella Moore
Stella Moore is Mrs. Moore’s daughter. She marries Fielding.

Miss Adela Quested
Miss Adela Quested is a young Englishwoman who with Mrs. Moore visits India for the first time. She is to decide whether to become engaged to Ronny Heaslop. Adela is intelligent and curious; she wants to discover the real India and meet Indians. She is determined not to develop the patronizing and contemptuous attitude to Indians that the other English people have. Adela is involved in the central incident in the novel when she accuses Aziz of assaulting her in one of the Marabar Caves. Later, at the trial, she withdraws her accusation. Shunned by the English, and with her engagement to Ronny broken off, she returns to England.

Mr. Turton
Mr. Turton, known as the Collector, is the governor of Chandrapore. He has an officious manner, and he shares the usual English prejudices, but he treats Indians with courtesy, even arranging “Bridge Parties,” to bridge the gap between East and West.

Mrs. Turton
Mrs. Turton is Mr. Turton’s wife. She is a snob and a racist and does not seem to mind who knows it.

 

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