Maurice

Maurice

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by E. M. Forster, Peter Firth
     
 

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Set in the elegant Edwardian world of Cambridge undergraduate life, this story by a master novelist intorduces us to Maurice Hall when he is fourteen. We follow him through public school and Cambridge, and on into his father's firm, Hill and Hall, Stock Brokers. In a highly structured society, Maurice is a conventional young man in almost every way, "stepping into the…  See more details below

Overview

Set in the elegant Edwardian world of Cambridge undergraduate life, this story by a master novelist intorduces us to Maurice Hall when he is fourteen. We follow him through public school and Cambridge, and on into his father's firm, Hill and Hall, Stock Brokers. In a highly structured society, Maurice is a conventional young man in almost every way, "stepping into the niche that England had prepared fo him": except that he is homosexual.

Written durring 1913 and 1914, immediately after Howards End, and not published until 1971, Maurice was ahead of its time in it theme and in its affirmation that love between men can be happy. "Happiness," Forster wrote, "is its keynote. . . . In Maurice I tried to create a character who was completely like myself or what I supposed myself to be: someone handsome, healthy, bodily attractive, mentally torpid, not a bad businessman and rather a snob. Into this mixture I dropped an ingredient that puzzles him, wakes him up, torments him, and finally saves him."

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Editorial Reviews

Christopher Lehmann-Haupt
A wonderful novel to read -- rich in its subtle intelligence, beautifully controlled in its development, deeply moving -- in short, the work of an exceptional artist working close to the peak of his creative powers.
The New York Times
Library Journal - Audio
Forster's influential novel of homosexual yearnings (first published in 1971) is splendidly narrated by British actor Peter Firth in this fine production. Maurice Hall is a rather typical member of the British upper middle class: racist, classist, ignorant, and proud. He attends university where he meets Clive Dunham, and they begin a passionate, albeit chaste, affair. After Clive has a bout of influenza, he loses all feelings for Maurice and decides to marry and live a conventional lifestyle. Maurice is devastated. He eventually meets and begins a relationship with Clive's gamekeeper Alec Scudder, which alternates among blackmail, denial, and, finally, love. Firth is superb at voicing Maurice with all his faults and his immense bravery at the end. Firth makes Maurice completely relatable and sympathetic despite his flaws. He portrays Clive's lack of depth and his upper-class family's shallow politeness in ever-so-subtle ways. VERDICT Although this story is not one of Forster's finest, listeners will be drawn in thanks to the narration that brings every character to life in the most thrilling way. Highly recommended.—B. Allison Gray, Santa Barbara P.L. Syst., Goleta, CA

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780745127620
Publisher:
Sound Library
Publication date:
09/01/1996
Edition description:
Unabridged

Meet the Author

E. M. Forster was one of the major novelists of the first half of the twentieth century. He was born in 1879 and educated at Cambridge. His other novels include A Room with a View, Howards End, and A Passage to India. He died in 1970.

Brief Biography

Date of Birth:
January 1, 1879
Date of Death:
June 7, 1970
Place of Birth:
London
Place of Death:
Coventry, England
Education:
B. A. in classics, King's College, Cambridge, 1900; B. A. in history, 1901; M.A., 1910

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