Read e-book online A Passage to India: Essays in Interpretation PDF

By John Beer (eds.)

ISBN-10: 0333404572

ISBN-13: 9780333404577

ISBN-10: 1349179949

ISBN-13: 9781349179947

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That mystery, intensified by the racial and religious tensions that accompany it, is the plot of the novel. It is a mystery that is not unravelled until Adela dramatically confesses, in the middle of the trial, that 'nothing' happened in the caves, that Aziz was not even in the same cave. These are the events that Santha Rama Rau concentrated on when she made a stage play out of A Passage to India; they are the kind of events that can be witnessed and acted out before our eyes, they are the kind of mysteries that can be solved.

What was that 'everything' they were to focus up? In this space I can only hint at answers to these questions, for the meaning of A Passage to India does not lend itselfto paraphrase; more than most novels it has to be absorbed and contemplated, meditated upon like a mandala, before it yields its secrets. The most I can do is suggest what kind of mysteries the caves contain and how those mysteries are made known in the narrative. 16 The Caves 17 What happened in the caves? On the surface level, of course, the 'event' engendered in the caves is Adela's panic - her terrified sense of being assaulted by something or someone.

These are the mysteries of what Forster discussed in Aspects under the heading of 'Prophecy'. As plot-maker, the novelist is master-of-ceremonies, 'competent, poised above his work, throwing a beam of light here, popping on a cap of invisibility there'- but with the mysteries of prophecy the author is not the omnipotent or omniscient master-of-ceremonies but as much in the dark as anyone. (One can even argue that Forster did not understand the meaning of the caves, or of this novel as a whole, until years after he had written it.

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A Passage to India: Essays in Interpretation by John Beer (eds.)

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