Edward Morgan Forster, OM (January 1, 1879 - June 7, 1970), was an English novelist, short story writer, and essayist. He is known best for his ironic and well-plotted novels examining class difference and hypocrisy in early 20th-century British society. Forster's humanistic impulse toward understanding and sympathy may be aptly summed up in the epigraph to his 1910 novel Howards End: "Only connect."
Forster was gay, but this fact was not made public during his lifetime. His posthumously released novel Maurice tells of the coming of age of an explicitly gay male character.