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Howards End

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Introduction

From the start of chapter 11 to the end How does Forster use contrast and opposition in the aftermath of Mrs Wilcox's death? Throughout the novel, "Howards End," Forster has used contrast as one of the main structural devices to develop the connection between the relationships. Materialism and spiritualism are one of the contrasts in the novel which aid us when viewing the relationships between the Wilcox family. Spiritualism is the 'unseen,' the intangible attachment to objects in life and Mrs Wilcox represents the unseen in the novel even after she has died. Forster is presenting the 'unseen' to us through the colour of nature/images of Mrs Wilcox's funeral and though Mrs Wilcox isn't physically present her spirit still lives on in nature. For example Clouds drifted over it from the west; or the church may have been a ship, high prowed, steering with all its company towards infinity Forster's use of the sea and imagery in this line helps present the 'unseen' and how spiritually Mrs Wilcox ...read more.

Middle

Even more so, the references to the lower classes emphasise the callus mind of the rest of the Wilcox family and how later on they handling of the letter proves this as they do not deal with feelings they are pragmatic for example the sarcastic comment about how 'funeral of the rich was to them what the funeral of Alecestis or Ophelia is to the educated' Supporting the evidence so far it is clear that Mrs Wilcox "knew no more of worldly wickedness than did the flowers in her garden" contrasting the rest of her family quite immensely, which is also proof that her family did not understand her beliefs- this is evident when they turn the pony stable into a garage for though there may not have been a pony in the stables the stable had sentimental value to Mrs Wilcox as this was her family home losing the traditional rural look and becoming more urbanised. ...read more.

Conclusion

At the end of the chapter there is a metaphor that refer to the Wilcox's avoiding their emotion and stop them from hearing reality "voyaged past the sirens, having first stopped one another's ears with wool" both the Wilcox men are blocking out the emotion of how hurt they are by losing Ruth Wilcox but they are also blocking out the guilt from ignoring her last wishes of leaving Howards End to Margaret. Howards End was not just a house but to Mrs Wilcox it was her spirit. However more to the point I have perceived Forster's attitudes to the seen and unseen throughout chapter 11 and the rest of the novel to suggest that one cannot be without the other and that to make the world what it is they both are viewed by many people differently but are connected because it makes us all the individuals that we are. Kelly Charter ...read more.

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