This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

A Passage Of Muddles Essay

1368 words - 5 pages

Intercultural communication is prone to misunderstandings and confusion, or put simply, muddle-prone. While common cultural miscommunications are often minor offences, some have far more detrimental consequences. In E.M. Forster’s novel A Passage to India, conflict results with the collision of two cultures in the British-Indian city of Chandrapore, which is plagued by racial, class and religious tension amongst Anglo and Native Indians. The novel chronicles the attempted intercultural friendships of Dr. Aziz, a Native Indian, and three English individuals: Cyril Fielding, Mrs. Moore, and Ms. Quested. While A Passage to India features many potential opportunities of friendship and positive relationships between the Anglo-Indians and Natives, each is inhibited by the muddles of communication featured in Laray M. Barna’s “Stumbling Blocks in Intercultural Communication”.
Although American education has stressed the similarity of all humans, failure to acknowledge cultural differences amongst other individuals while communicating produces the first of Barna’s communication muddles. The assumption of similarities amidst intercultural communication readily allows for misinterpretation. As Barna explains, “The stumbling block of assumed similarity is a troublem,…,not only for the foreigner but for the people in the host country…The native inhabitants are likely to be lulled into the expectation that…he or she will also have similar nonverbal codes, thoughts and feelings.” (371). At their first meeting, Aziz exhibits the Assumption of Similarity when he exclaims his distaste for the his Anglo-Indian superior and his Anglo-Indian wife in response to Mrs. Moore’s vague observation of the wife’s lack of charm (Forster 21). In response to Mrs. Moore’s seeming interest in his plight, Aziz “was excited partly by his wrongs, but much more by the knowledge that someone sympathized with them.” (Forster 21). By interpreting Mrs. Moore’s casual interest as a likeness to the oriental traits embodied in Indian culture, Aziz creates a communication muddle that would result leaves him vulnerable to punishment by his superiors.
Aside from assuming similarities amongst foreign individuals, language differences also readily result in communication muddles. While a basic understanding of a language is beneficial in superficial communication, Barna notes that “Vocabulary, syntax, idioms, slang, dialects, and so on, all cause difficulty…” (373). Mrs. Moore and Miss Quested misinterpret Mrs. Bhattacharya’s limited fluency in English as an invitation to visit, as “Her gesture implied that she had known, since Thursdays began, that English ladies would come to see her on one of them, and so always stayed in.” (Forster 45). While the Englishwomen’s literal interpretation of Mrs. Bhattacharya replies would serve as an invitation, they failed to realize it was what Barna considers “a case where [yes] means [no].” (373). However, there was contextual evidence of Mrs....

Find Another Essay On A Passage of Muddles

The Monomyth: Rites of Passage in a Hero's Life

508 words - 2 pages A rite of passage is a memorable, emotionally charged journey that leads a person from one place in their life to another. Joseph Campbell, an american mythologist, recognized a structure which was often used in the story of a heroes journey. This structure he called a Monomyth, can be simplified and described as a 3 step process of departure, initiation and return. The "hero" (or anyone for that matter) departs their current situation and

Hazing Through Beating as a Right of Passage

783 words - 3 pages Hazing Through Beating as a Right of Passage Hazing has been known as the right of passage into American colleges in the past and even still today. Primarily in fraternities hazing has been more so a problem than any other organization. Most anyone who's seen the classic college movie "Animal House" can recall this famous seen of young Kevin Bacon's paddling during his fraternity pledgeship. In this context, the lines and scenes of hazing

Forster's "A Passage to India" The Mystery of Mrs. Moore

1123 words - 4 pages more manifest through her spiritual association with the wasp, a recurrent symbol for the Hindu vision of collectivity.Besides, Mrs. Moore is the only Christian voice in A Passage to India, though her Christianity will be plagued later in the novel. She is the one character that criticizes the English racism on religious basis: "Because India is part of the earth. And God has put us on the earth in order to be pleasant to each other. God… is

Write a critical analysis of the passage from A Handful of Dust

1037 words - 4 pages Write a critical analysis of the passage from A Handful of Dust starting is mummy coming back today? (p55) and finishing I've been carrying on anyhow this week (p 57), showing how far you think it typical of Waugh's methods and effects in the novel. The passage starts with John Andrew, the most innocent person in the novel speaking. He is questioning the absence of his mother and waiting eagerly for her return from "monkey-woman's party

Comparing the Impact of Colonization in A Small Place, A Passage to India, and Robinson Crusoe

1105 words - 4 pages Impact of British Colonization Exposed in A Small Place, A Passage to India, and Robinson Crusoe British colonialism began in the early fifteen hundreds and even continues today with the British rule of the British Virgin Islands.  For centuries, literature has served as a type of historical documentation of colonization as many authors wrote about colonization from both a colonized and a colonizer's point of view. During colonization, and

THE END OF MY STORY (A DISCUSSION OF THE PASSAGE THE WRITER)

858 words - 4 pages the truth. The anonymous user posed the question, “Isn’t it ironic how we forget the things we wished them to remember, and remember the things we wished they had all forgotten?” In “The Writer” by Richard Wilbur, we see this concept in full bloom. Wilbur confesses, “It is always a matter, my darling, of life or death, as I had forgotten.” In this passage, Mr. Wilbur is explaining to his daughter that in his absence of struggle, he has forgotten

Passage analysis of: My Last Duchess, Fra Lippo Lippi, and A Toccata of Galuppi's - Literature - Essay

1072 words - 5 pages . Ultimately, as stated in ‘Love Among the Ruins’, Browning sees ‘love’ as ‘best. In essence, Browning demonstrates how the physicality of art and a misunderstanding of it can corrupt or leave one unfulfilled, while a true understanding and embrace of it has the potential to ennoble. (Last paragraph got sloppy. Written in 70 minutes, including reading time. Feedback was to work on links between paragraphs - particularly between one and two which wasn’t very good - and to work on exploration of texts outside of the passage set, which were a little rushed)

An Analysis of a Passage in The Stranger by Albert Camas

1906 words - 8 pages This passage is set before Meursault’s execution with the chaplain entering the scene, and telling Meursault that his “heart is blind”, leading to Meursault to yell and delve into his rant, and moment of consciousness. The passage has a calm in the beginning as if Meursault catches his breath from yelling previously, and he starts to reassure himself that he is not wrong for expressing his views as it went against the public’s religious beliefs

The Difficulty of English- Indian Friendship in "A Passage to India"

1591 words - 6 pages In his "A Passage to India", Forster explores the possibility of English-Indian Friendship. He begins and ends by posing the question of whether it is possible for an Englishman and an Indian to ever be friends, at least within the context of British colonialism.Thus, as soon as the novel opens, the reader is introduced to an argument, between Mahmoud Ali, Hamidullah, and, Aziz raising this English-Indian-friendship question. The argument is

The Important Role of the Marabar Caves in A Passage to India

2984 words - 12 pages The Important Role of the Marabar Caves in A Passage to India       During the fourteen years that followed the publication of Howards End, Edward Morgan Forster underwent a harsh mood change that culminated in the publication of A Passage to India, Forster's bitterest book (Shusterman 159).  Forster was not alone in his transition to a harsher tone in his fiction.  A Passage to India was written in the era that

Analysis of the way voice and dialogue are used in a passage from Pride and Predjudice

1129 words - 5 pages The passage used is from Volume 1 chapter IX, running from 'And so ended his affection' and running to the end of the chapter.The passage concentrates on the interplay between the various 'voices' and as such is dialogic. Our understanding of events and characters is enhanced by the combination of 'showing' (dialogue) and 'telling' (narrative), which includes techniques such as free indirect speech and focalisation.The passage opens with direct

Similar Essays

Explication Of A Passage From "The Odyssey"

1314 words - 5 pages great spume of seas." The passage describes how, like a general calling up his reserves, Poseidon "called up the wind from every quarter," and how he uses his powers to "send a wall of rain to blot out land and sea in torrential night." He transforms the calm sea into a raging storm, "churn[ing] the deep with both hands on his trident." It is at once transformed by the god into a nightmarish hurricane; the seas whirl and the winds bluster

Take A Passage From Moby Dick And Explain The Symbols Of The Book Within The Passage

1262 words - 5 pages Tools of DestinyCome, Ahab's compliments to ye; come and see if ye can swerve me. Swerve me? Ye cannot swerve me, else ye yourselves! Man has ye there. Swerve me? The path to my fixed purpose is laid with iron rails, whereon my soul is grooved to run. Over unsounded gorges, through the rifled hearts of mountains, under torrents' beds, unerringly I rush! Naught's an obstacle, naught's an angle to the iron way! (337)In the passage above, Ahab is

Analysis Of A Passage From The Grapes Of Wrath

2870 words - 11 pages missing works cited Depicting the Dust Bowl exodus, The Grapes of Wrath is a literary masterpiece. Development and hierarchy are portrayed. In the passage to be studied, almost at the beginning of the novel, Tom Joad, who has just been released from prison, discovered his abandoned house. Travelling with Casy, a former preacher, they met Muley Graves , one of his former neighbours who refused to leave the country, after people have been

The Analysis Of A Passage Of Verse In 1590 1700

2438 words - 10 pages The Analysis of a Passage of Verse in 1590-1700 An analysis of a passage of verse or prose written between 1590-1700, explaining the meaning and quality they would aim to bring out in speaking the passage aloud. “To Anthea who may command him anything”- Robert Herrick The way we speak poetry must reflect the emotion of the poet, when writing it. To do