Edward Morgan Forster

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Edward Morgan Foster

“Everywhere that Forster sees creed overtaking honor or role suppressing man, he is ready to take the issue; that means using his pervasive weapon, irony.” -Mike Edwards

Edward Morgan Foster was born in January 1879 in London and was the only child of Edward Morgan Llewellyn Foster, who worked as an architect and Alice Clara Lily; he was raised in an upper-middle-class family. His childhood was denoted by his close relation with several women because his father died before he even got one year of life. Forster first attended to Tonbridge school which he disliked and then he moved to King’s College in Cambridge from 1897 to 1901, where he dedicated his studies on philosophy, literature and history and finally graduating with a degree in Classics. After some time, he became a member of the Cambridge Apostles, they were a group who discussed society seeped in philosophical skepticism that shaped Forster’s liberalist influences and led him to question, and later lose his Christian faith. The biggest influences that Forster had received in that society were Sir James Frazer, Goldsworthy, Lowes Dickinson. After graduating, he started his career as a writer, his novels boarding the themes about the varying social circumstances of that time. After he left Cambridge, Forster traveled around Europe in countries like Greece and Italy, where he got his inspiration for his first two litetary works, that were two novels: Where Angels Fear to Tread (1905), where he showed his concern that people needed to stay in close contact with their roots and, A Room with a View (1908), that represent a life unrestrained by the strict laws of society. He also visited India and Egypt this experiences would mold his cosmopolitanism and his growing interest in foreign cultures, on his return to England he published articles and stories in the Independent Review and kept contact with the lively intellectual circle of friends he had made at university, simultaneously with his work in the Independent Review, he also published some papers in The Athenaeum, a London literary magazine, which published works for other artists, like T. Hardy. In 1912 and 1913 he traveled to India with his close friends Syed Ross Masood and after those years he spent from 1915 to 1918 in Alexandria, while being with the Red Cross. Forster visited again India in the early 1920s where he was the private secretary of Tukojirao III, the Maharajah of Dewas. He used India as an influence to his novel, A Passage to India, which is set entirely out of England and he uses the confrontation between the Englishmen, who where colonizing the area, and the native Indians, as a major theme for his novel and as an important point of analysis and reflection. Later on, after returning to England, he joined the Bloomsbury group, an intellectual circle whose members were against the artistic, social, sexual and cultural bans of Victorian society, to which he naturally opossed as being a closeted homosexual and strong believer of the modern liberalism. His literary production stopped after the publication of A Passage To India (1924), even though he continued to write non fiction papers and essays. In the same year he was also awarded the ‘James Tait Black Memorial Prize’ following this successful novel , in 1946 he was awarded and honorary fellowship at King's College, then he was presented knighthood in 1949; an offer he declined, was made a ‘Companion of Honor’ in 1953 and in 1969 a member of the ‘Order of Merit’. On june 7th he dies from a stroke in Cambridge, one year after his death, his work Maurice (1914-15) was published, which had very strong homosexual themes and points of views.

It`s difficult to attribute an especific literary period to Forster, because he wrote his works in a transition time, beetween the Victorian Age and the Modernism, so even if he was very inclined to modernist ideas, there is still some influence from the Victorian Age on his...
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