Morgan Forster was born in London in 1879. He was a
member of Bloomsbury group and friend of Virginia Woolf. After gaining
fame as a novelist, Forster spent his 46 remaining years publishing mainly
short stories and non-fiction. Of his five important novels four appeared
before World War I. Forster's major concern was that individuals should
"connect the prose with the passion" within themselves, and that one of
the most exacting aspect of the novel is prophecy. Between the years 1912
and 1913 Forster travelled in India where he returned in 1921, working
as a private secretary to the Maharajah of Dewas. This land was the scene
of his masterwork A Passage to India (1924), an account of India
under British rule. It was Forter's last novel and for the remaining 46
years of his life he devoted himself to other activities. Writing novels
was not the most important element in his life. Interviewed by the
B.B.C. on his eightieth birthday he said "I have not writen as much
I'd like to. I write for two reasons: partly to make money and to win
the respect of the people whom I respect. I had better add that I am
quite sure I am not a great novelist".
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A story centered on an English country house
and dealing with the clash between two families, one interested in art and
literature, the other only in business. This novel brings together the
themes of money, business and culture. "To trust people is a luxury
in which only the wealthy can indulge; the poor cannot afford it"
(from Howards End).
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