Replete with suggestive descriptions of the setting that force the reader to reflect on the text in deeper terms, A Passage to India is undeniably elevated to the ranks of exemplary literature. Forster employs the setting, particularly the dichotomy between the architecture of Europe and India, to parallel the intensification of the British-Indian racial divide in the text. For example, just after the friendship between the Englishman Mr. Fielding and the Indian Dr. Aziz collapses, Forster dedicates an entire chapter to describing the harmony of Mediterranean architecture as Fielding returns home to England. Forster emphasizes Fielding’s satisfaction as he recaptures the European “beauty of form,” but also notes that Fielding’...
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...terature, by its very essence, must.
Despite having been written almost a century ago, E.M. Forster’s complex work continues to exist as a paragon of literature, confounding the human mind and revealing to readers the unbidden consequences of the clash between two antithetical cultures. Perhaps appearing upon cursory glance to be merely a requiem for a bygone era, A Passage to India is in fact an affecting and enduring story that addresses not just one group or creed, but humankind as an entirety. Just like the variegated strokes of a piece of art, true works of literature generously open themselves to the world, beckoning all to uncover what it is to be human. So profoundly stirring the mind and soul, only when one brings such literature into their lives can the choking tendrils, the shroud of ignorance humankind has of its own condition, be finally blown asunder.
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