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Dr. Aziz is a young Muslim physician in the British Indian town of Chandrapore. One evening he comes across an English woman, Mrs. Moore, in the courtyard of a local mosque; she and her younger travelling companion Adela are disappointed by claustrophobic British colonial culture and wish to see something of the 'real' India. But when Aziz kindly offers to take them on a tour of the Marabar caves with his close friend Cyril Fielding, the trip results in a shocking accusation that throws Chandrapore into a fever of racial tension.
Set against the backdrop of the British Raj and the Indian independence movement in the 1920s it deals with the common racial tensions and prejudices between Indians and the British who ruled India.
Many of Forster's novels observed class difference and hypocrisy in early 20th-century British society including A Passage to India, the novel which brought him his greatest success. A secular humanist, Forster showed concern for social, political, and spiritual divisions in the world.
Time magazine included A Passage to India in its All-Time 100 Novels list and it was selected as one of the 100 great works of 20th century English literature by the Modern Library.
Directed by David Lean, a film adaptation was released in 1984 that won numerous awards including two Oscars.
A Cambridge graduate who trained at RADA under the direction of Sir Laurence Olivier, Sam Dastor has long featured on screen and stage. He is best known for The Life and Death of Peter Sellers (2004) and for twice portraying Gandhi in both Lord Mountbatten: The Last Viceroy (1986), and Jinnah (1998).
Sam Dastor has starred in many West End productions with roles such as Ariel in The Tempest, and Orlando in As You Like It. His most recent work has included starring on stage at the Wolsey Theatre in A Midsummer Night’s Dream (2016). He has narrated a large catalogue of audiobooks including V.S. Naipaul’s A House for Mr Biswas.
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Such a rewarding choice
- L. McCulloch