(1879 - 1970)
 “What is wonderful about great literature is that it transforms the man who reads it towards the condition of the man who wrote [it]”

 Edward Morgan Forster was an English novelist, short story writer, essayist and critic.  Shortly after graduating from King’s College, Cambridge, Forster decided on writing as a career. He was a quiet and unassuming man (Lytton Strachey unkindly referred to him as “The Taupe”) who wrote exquisitely detailed and critical observations on the state of British Edwardian society, in which he examined changing social conditions, hypocrisy and the irreconcilability of class differences. However his reputation as one of the finest writers of his time is based on only five novels spread over 20 years : Where Angels Fear to Tread (1905), The Longest Journey (1907),  A Room With a View (1908), Howards End (1910) and A Passage to India (1924) , for which he was awarded the prestigious James Tait Black Memorial Prize. He also wrote Maurice (1971) in 1913  but did not permit its publication during his own lifetime as he was concerned about possible repercussions over its overt themes of homosexuality.

He moved amongst the intellectuals of his day, was part of the Bloomsbury Group and included among his friends the leading political philosopher Goldsworthy Lowes Dickenson, who accompanied him on his trip to India in 1912.  He spent much of 1914 – 1918 in Alexandria, Egypt, as a voluntary worker for the Red Cross, followed in 1921 by further travel in India.  It was when he returned to England, inspired by his experiences, that he wrote his greatest and most famous work of fiction, A Passage to India. Although this proved to be his last novel, he continued to write short stories, published in The Celestial Omnibus (1911) and The Eternal Moment (1928) as well as essays and non-fiction works. In 1946 Forster accepted a fellowship at Cambridge, where he remained until his death in 1970.


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Howards End



Desmond Maccarthy