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Passage to India

Like Howards End, E M Forster's 1924 novel A Passage to India is artfully written, thoughtful, gentle, harsh, and far ahead of its time in lovingkindness toward humanity in its glorious and tragic diversity. Imagery echoes: stars and skies, beasts and men, glorious beauty in all of its infinite forms. Forster puts human relationships under the microscope and analyzes them mercilessly. His characters are both weak and strong, confused and brilliant, selfish and noble. Passage to India is comic, dark, fiery, brisk. Like life.

A tiny snapshot, from Section I (Mosque), Chapter III:

Mrs. Moore, whom the club had stupefied, woke up outside. She watched the moon, whose radiance stained with primrose the purple of the surrounding sky. In England the moon had seemed dead and alien; here she was caught in the shawl of night together with earth and all the other stars. A sudden sense of unity, of kinship with the heavenly bodies, passed into the old woman and out, like water through a tank, leaving a strange freshness behind. ...

And a little later, in the same section's Chapter V ("kites" are a species of bird):

... Some kites hovered overhead, impartial, over the kites passed the mass of a vulture, and with an impartiality exceeding all, the sky, not deeply coloured but translucent, poured light from its whole circumference. It seemed unlikely that the series stopped here. Beyond the sky must not there be something that overarches all the skies, more impartial even than they? Beyond which again . . . ...

More brief bits to follow ...

^z - 2017-08-22