A Passage To India: Additional Information Flashcards Preview

Unit 3/4 English > A Passage To India: Additional Information > Flashcards

Flashcards in A Passage To India: Additional Information Deck (51):

What is imperialism?

This is a policy of extending a county's power and influence. It usually refers to political or economic control over one nation from another.


What is colonialism?

This is the policy of acquiring full or partial control over another country, occupying it with settlers and exploiting it economically. It is often interchangeable with imperialism.


What is the British Ran and Viceroy?

British Raj - British ruler (raj = means reign/rule)

Viceroy - vice = deputy and roi = king (therefore vice king)


Key elements for context writing and developing a response to the prompt.

You draw on
you include
you develop your
this is assessed on
⬇️ ⬇️


Explain how A Passage to India engages extensively with the ideas of the imaginative landscape.

It particularly looks at landscapes holding different meaning for different people.

At its heart, A Passage to India depicts the powerful effect landscapes can have on an individual's and the subjective nature of these places.


What is A Passage to India?

It is a film adaption of the English author E.M. Forster's 1924 novel by the same name.

It is set against the backdrop of the British Raj and the Indian independence movement in the 1920's, the film portrays the tensions inherent in Colonial India and the changes taking place within that environment.


What does A Passage to India focus on?

It focuses on the British colonial administration of India, the racism of the Western colonial empires, and the concept of the ultimate hostility of nature. The story revolves around fourth characters (Dr. Aziz, Mr. Cyril Fielding, Mrs. Moore and Miss Adela Quested).


What part in A Passage to India brings to boil common racial tensions?

During a trip to the Marabar caves Adela realises that she is alone with Dr. Aziz in one of the faces, panics and flees. Or os assumed that Dr. Aziz has attempted to assault her. Aziz's trial, and it's run-up aftermath, bring to a boil the common racial tensions and prejudices between indigenous Indians and the British who rule India.


Historical perspective.

The Western colonial empire justified their subjugation of the colones through the concept of racial superiority and the doctrine of "The Just Rule." Imperialists claimed that because of the moral and technical superiority of the West it was preordained that Westerners would rule the less developed countries.


What is considered the ultimate goal of colonialism?

The adult image goal of colonialism, according to its proponents, was to lift the "natives" out of savagery.


When did the British begin trading with India?

The British began trading with India in 1600, focusing on cotton, indigo, pepper, yarn, sugar, silk and other commodities. At the time, India was ruled by a decaying Muslim empire.


What does Lean/Lean's film do?

. Lean's A Passage to India depicts the corrupting influence of imperial powers in a colonial setting.

. Lean's film of Forster's novel A Passage to India questions the possibility of true connections of people in differing social landscapes.

. Lean's A Passage to India derides Anglo-Indian colonial society for its sham representation of "home" in "tropical suburbia".

. Lean's film A Passage to India condemns colonial thinking an practices, beliefs and attitudes by exploring their costs.

. This film A Passage to India shows how different cultures, when forced to intermix, misunderstand each other, and what consequences stem from those misunderstandings.

. The film deals with the failure of humans being able to communicate satisfactorily and their failure to eliminate prejudice to establish possible relationships and an understanding of social and physical landscapes.


Natural features in landscapes - beliefs, views, values, ideas conveyed

Water - life and death (Mrs Moore), has brought people together (Adela, Aziz and Godbole), cleanses (eg. Feet), rain is uncontrollable, monsoon, train over river (shows how Indian landscape is further touched by the British)

Cave - realisations/epiphanies, darkness, unknown, intriguing,


Remember to:

Shift to the film and then flick back to experiences (own, family and others' experiences).


Discuss the echo.

- tells her she does not belong there
- she will never understand the landscape
- she is destined for a cold loveless marriage under the heat of the Chandrapore sun

Mrs Moore
- her religious beliefs begin to crumble
- she doesn't belong here


What should you do when you have a promote in front of you?

Try to turn the prompt into a question/contention.



Ronny's home (nicely decorated, neatly cut grass, manicured)
Aziz's home (dust, little house, plaster coming off walls)

Turtons car (impatient, horn beeping, not afraid to barge through people)
Aziz and Mahmoud Ali simply trying to get from A to B on their bikes

Sleeping quarters for Adela and Mrs Moore (nice beds, warm, comfortable looking, lots of room, luxurious)
Indians in slums (piled on top of each other, cold, dirty, uncomfortable)

Calm river with a train that carves its way through the landscape.

British walking through (Turtons look disgusted, bland clothes)
Indians (many of them, like an ocean, loud, colourful clothes)

British (viceroy walking at start - choreographed, structured)
Indians (free, chaos)

England at the beginning with Adela (rain, cold, dark, dreary, bland)
India (exotic, hot, intriguing, mystical, colourful)


What does A Passage to India suggest?

A Passage to India suggests that different people can have opposing imaginative connections to landscape and that adjusting to changed landscapes is difficult, not only for those who impose changed but also for those upon whom unwelcome change is inflicted.


How are the inner landscapes of Indian inhabitants transformed?

The inner landscapes of Indian inhabitants are radically transformed by encounters with British culture.

. Indians such as Aziz become ashamed of their modest homes when compared to the grandeur of British residence and public buildings.
. While the British transformation of Chandrapore creates a superficial familiarity for expatriates, the relentless Indian sun beats down and the mysterious Marabar Mountains dominate the distant horizon.
. The imaginative connection made by the British in Chandrapore creates disharmony with the landscape, both for themselves and the alienated Indian population.


What do the powerful symbols of the natural world reflect?

These powerful symbols of the natural world reflect a growing Indian resistance to the British presence, made explicit when the Indian women mock Mrs Turton at the "bridge party."


Explain journeys (part 1).

The motif of the physical journeys highlights significant changes to the inner landscapes of Adela and Mrs Moore as they encounter increasingly unfamiliar external landscapes.

On the train, their contact with the Turtons foreshadows the inequities of Chandrapore, which will affect both women profoundly. Still more challenging are the ruined temple and the Marabar caves.


Explain journeys (part 2).

Their journeys to these places take each of the women deeper into landscapes where they are confronted, not only by the sheer power of nature but also by their unconscious fear of it.

The women's quests to connect with the "real India" lead, ironically, to their permanent disconnection from it. The motif of the journey shows the power of external landscapes to transform the ways in which people perceive themselves.


Explain social gatherings (part 1).

From the triviality of the musical entertainment at the club to the travesty at the "bridge party", British social gatherings reinforce the class and cultural boundaries that underpin colonialism.

Such events aim to transplant British culture onto an Indian landscape; nostalgic expatriates are encouraged to feel "at home" and newcomers are inducted through these social gatherings.


Explain social gatherings (part 2).

By contrast, the social gatherings in Fielding's garden occurs in a welcoming landscape where invited British and Indian guests are perceived as equals.

The picnic at the Marabar caves is intended as an extension of the welcome and as a celebration of a uniquely Indian landscape, although Aziz's misguided perceptions of the British as his comically exaggerated hospitality make it an awkward and, ultimately a catastrophic event.

The social gatherings in A Passage to India provide viewers with deeper insights into the ways that imagined landscapes reaffirm the values and perpetuate the cultural trading of their inhabitants.


Explain natural landscapes (part 1).

The film's opening scene is a subtle reminder of the power of humans over the natural landscape. The conversion of water to steams power for shops (and the trains we see later) is evidence of the power of human imagination.

. The caves
. The temple
. The sky
. The blazing sun
. The night sky


Explain natural landscapes (power of nature to resist transformation - the caves and the temple).

Also evident, however, is the power of nature to resist transformation. The landscape of the Marabar Caves resists human intervention, enticing with its mystery yet ultimately rejecting human presence.

The ruined temple, abandoned and overrun by twisting vines, is the domain of screeching monkeys; it is a remnant of powerful past civilisation, decaying in the wilderness.

Yet, in its turn, the landscape becomes a place of fascination (imaginative connection)more Adela - this indicates the complex interplay between the natural world and the human imagination.


Explain natural landscapes (the sky and the sun).

The human imagination is also at work interpreting the infinite vastness of the India sky. Another powerful symbol of the natural world, the sky is either a dazzling backdrop for the blazing sun of, at night, a deep indigo with a a pale silver moon suspended among thousands of stars.

The British are often aware of the blazing sun burning down as if subjecting the British to "ordeal by fire" for their invasion of the landscape. References to the sun and the heat (by, for employees, Ronny and Mrs Moore) suggest their discontentedness from this harsh physical environment.

As part of an imaginative landscape, the fierce sun in the Indian sky is a reminder to the British of their vulnerability in a foreign place to forces that might overwhelm them (like surging crowds that gather during Aziz's trial).


Explain natural landscapes (the night sky).

The night sky presents another kind of challenge to the "invaders", in the form of an imaginative response from characters who are connected to the physical landscape of India.

After being humiliated by Mrs Callendar, Aziz gazes at the glittering night sky, imagining the infinity if time and space, which reduces Mrs Callendar, and indeed the entire British Raj, to nothingness.

The light of the stars in the dark night sky is also symbolic of hope in a world of darkness - as it seems to Aziz. As a recurring motif, the overarching sky is also a constant reminder of the changing seasons, the passage of time and the inevitable decline of empires, including the British empire.


What are some recurring motifs/symbols/imagery?

. The Marabar caves
. The echo


Explain the following motif: the Marabar caves.

These caves are referred to often and assumed to be of great significance; they have a "reputation" but no-one is able to explain it.

The caves are a symbol of the natural world and exert considerable power over the human imagination.

Adela's need to discover the mystery of the caves highlights a human impulse to reduce the power of the unknown.

In this sense, the saves also represent the subconscious: in their impenetrable darkness, Adela is confronted with her innermost fears.

The imaginative connection of Adela to this powerful landscape is a turning point in her life.


Explain the following motif: the echo.

Inextricably connected with the caves, the echo is a powerful auditory symbol. We hear it's penetrating sound and witness its harmful effect on Mrs Moore.

It is also a recurring motif, haunting Adela, who cannot rid herself of it until after the trial. Inside the caves, the echo's mockery of the visitors is threatening.

In magnifying and endlessly producing their words, the echo reduces human sound to meaningless noise. Mrs Moore is deeply unsettled by this that she describes human beings "as merely passing figures in a Godless universe."

Like Godbole, Mrs Moore comes to believe that nothing she can do will "make the least difference" but her attitude is one of nihilistic pessimism rather than Godbole's calm fatalism.


Explain imagined spiritual landscapes (part 1).

Page 47


Explain imagined spiritual landscapes (part 2).

Page 47


Explain imagined spiritual landscapes (part 3).

Page 47


Explain moral landscapes (part 1).

Page 46


Explain moral landscapes (part 2).

Page 46


Explain psychological landscapes (part 1).

Page 45


Explain psychological landscapes (part 2).

Page 45


Explain psychological landscapes (part 3).

Page 46


Explain psychological landscapes (part 4).

Page 46


Explain imagined hierarchies (part 1).

Page 44


Explain imagined hierarchies (part 2).

Page 44


Explain imagined hierarchies (part 3).

Page 45


Explain perceptions of superiority/inferiority (part 1).

Page 43/44


Explain perceptions of superiority/inferiority (part 2).

Page 44


Explain imagined social landscapes.

Page 43


Explain the imagined political landscapes (part 1).

Page 42


Explain the imagined political landscapes (part 2).

Page 43


Explain the imagined political landscapes (part 3).

Page 43


Explain the imagined political landscapes (part 4).

Page 43


What are the key context ideas relating to A Passage to India?

. External/exterior landscapes
. Inner/interior landscapes
. Physical surroundings
. Imagination, interpretation, perception, reflection
. Transformation
. Portrayal, representation, re-creation, projection
. Internalisation/externalisation
. Connection/disconnection
. Atmosphere, ambiance