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The sun setting on the British Empire: A Passage To India

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    7145 E. Indian School Road, Scottsdale, AZ (map)

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  • During a trip to the Marabar Caves, Adela thinks she finds herself alone with Dr. Aziz in one of the caves (when in fact he is in an entirely different cave), and subsequently panics and flees; it is assumed that Dr. Aziz has attempted to assault her. Aziz's trial, and its run-up and aftermath, bring to a boil the common racial tensions and prejudices between Indians and the British who rule India. 

    A Passage to India by E.M. Forster (1924) has been widely acclaimed as one of the most important novels of the 20th century; based on Forster's experiences in India in[masked], it won the 1924 James Tait Black Memorial Prize for fiction. It was Forster's last complete novel. He abandoned most fiction for the rest of his life, publishing only a few short stories and poems before his death (by stroke) in 1970. Biographers with access to his diaries have found that acceptance of his homosexuality and a series of homosexual relationships starting in his late 30s led to Forster's contentment with himself and reduced his creative drive.

    The 1984 adaptation directed by David Lean was his last film; it was nominated for 11 Oscars and won two, plus numerous other awards.

    A candidate for your "To Be Read" list: an excellent novel about Forster (published in 2015 by the superb Europa Publishing - check out their list), his friendships and his travels called Arctic Summer which is also the title of his last, unfinished book. The fragment was published in 2003.

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  • Colleen

    I am so glad you nominated Staying On. I've read The Raj Quartet and this book. Both are excellent! How many times have I watched The Jewel in the Crown? I can't remember. I've also read A Passage to India. Yeah, I love this period. :)

    November 8

    • Lauren

      I did enjoy the TV miniseries and as I said, am hooked on "Indian Summers." Have you read "Women of the Raj" by Margaret MacMillan? Excellent non-fiction.

      November 14

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