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Regular readers of this blog may remember that I have a deep-seated disdain for the entirely forgettable EM Forster, 'The cucumber sandwich of novelists'.

On reading this article, I have discovered these new tidbits of exciting Forster trivia:

Forster referred to his target middlebrow audience as 'Uncle Willie' for some weird reason - as in
'I just can't get Uncle Willie interested in my turgid pot-boilers'

He finds curiosity “one of the lowest of the human faculties” and humility “a quality for which I have only a limited admiration.”

Forster was always calling for more sex. He said "bodies are the instruments through which we register and enjoy the world". Yet his first sexual encounter, in Alexandria with an Egyptian bus driver, ended in his breaking his own arm through sheer awkwardness. (Not sure how one can do this, but it sounds mightily unenjoyable)

In the end Forster’s chief contribution has been to that continuing project of reinforcing liberals’ feelings of self-virtue owing to their lovely imaginative sensitivity and courageous distaste for social injustice.

5 comments:

Gadjo Dilo said...

Interesting. I've never read any Forster and don't mean to start. But then I've always avoided Merchant-Ivory films like the plague too.

worm said...

good choice Gadjo, entering into the world of Forster or Merchant Ivory is not advised. It's all so constipated

Gaw said...

I liked Howards End because it contained some interesting ideas. However, I suspect you're supposed to identify with the Schlegel characters and I thought the lot of them were all as awful as each other.

worm said...

Gaw, its true, there are some quite nice lofty ideals in there, but the Shlegels are a bunch of simpering bien pensant harpies

Susan said...

I don't think much of him either, but I do love that curiosity on his head: If he gets into any trouble on the buses he can always unravel it to use as a sling.