SUGGEST THE POLITICAL AND ARTISTIC IMPLICATIONS OF PLACING THE CONCLUSION OF PASSAGE TO INDIA WITHIN THE ORIENTALIST PARADIGM

Topics: Colonialism, British Empire, United Kingdom Pages: 3 (615 words) Published: October 12, 2014
QUES: Suggest the political and artistic implication of placing the conclusion of Passage to India within the Orientalist paradigm. Ans: It might seem scandalous to reduce E.M.Forster’s A Passage To India , complex and multi-faceted work considered one of the greatest novels of the 20th century, to such a concise formula. But we humbly offer up this mantra as our homage to Forster’s novel as a passage into his Passage To India. Published in 1924, when the cracks in the British Empire were just emerging , the novel centers on the trial of an Indian doctor accused of raping an Englishwoman.The work was the last of Forster’s novels, and a thematic departure for him as well. Previous novels such as A Room With A View (1908), Howards End(1910) stayed in Europe ,focusing on the familiar Edwardian theme of the individual’s struggle against the stifling convention of society. Informed by Forster’s own travels to India in 1912-13 & 1921 , A Passage To India has been lauded not only for its critique of the British Empire , but also for its stylistic innovation and philosophical density. So, a girl walks into a cave............and an empire trembles. One of the reasons that Forster’s novel is so amazing is that it takes an individual – case-a rape trial-and shows how it sets of network of social , political,and cultural,forces that reverberates across the British Empire. Set in india in the early 20th century when it was still a British colony , the novel challenges the claim that British had a right to colonize India. Variously called Britain’s “civilizing mission”or in Rudyard Kipling ‘s famous line , the “white man”s burden”,British imperialism was motivated by the idea that the british were a superior , enlightened and more advanced race than non-European peoples, and thus had a duty to “civilized “ these people , by force if necessary(source). British imperialism in India entailed a fundamentally racist set of beliefs about “Orientals”, a term which denoted anyone...
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