Connection and Alienation: A Comparative Study of E.M. Forster and George Orwell on their representation in A Passage to India and Burmese days

Dr. Miho Takashima
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E.M. Forster started writing "A Passage to India" (1924) before World War I and finished it after the war. It is a world of chaos, full of contradictory signs and symbols, with aesthetic expressions and political implications, which seems to reflect not only the internal chaos of the author himself but the chaos of the outside world he belonged to. Ten years later, Orwell, in his first novel, "Burmese Days" (1934), created another version of British-India, which was based on his first-hand experience in Burma. Although the work is set in a similar period to Forster's last novel, it gives quite a different and contrasting picture of colonial life in a British outpost. "Burmese Days" is a world of clarity, full of vivid, bare, realistic images. It is a world of distinctions, of dualism, with a clear political purpose - anti-imperialist. In this paper, therefore, I would like to ascribe this contrast between the two works to the different sources and processes of negation and affirmation in their personal and social lives within their cultural, political and historical contexts. I shall also seek what we could learn, in present society, from the messages in these works as well as the attitudes of the two English writers.

Keywords: Connection and alienation, A comparative study, E.M. Forster and George Orwell
Stream: Literature, Literary Studies
Presentation Type: Paper Presentation in English
Paper: Connection and Alienation

Dr. Miho Takashima

Lecturer, English Language and Literature Department, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, Meisei University

Miho graduated from Sophia University in Tokyo (French Language), worked for Banque Nationale de Paris, Tokyo Branch, for three years. Then, she went to England to study M.A and Ph.D (Literature) at Essex University. After returning to Japan and having taught at several private universities, she has started teaching Comparative Literature at Meisei University in Tokyo from April 2003.

Ref: H05P0131