Friendship between Fielding and Aziz

The ending in Passage to India which depicts the emotional yet resolute parting between Fielding and Aziz testifies to the unbridgable gap between the colonist and the colonized. The power structure that dictates their friendship proves to be the fundamental obstacle from the beginning to the end. As pondered over by Fielding, ‘All their stupid misunderstandings had been cleared up, but socially they had no meeting-place. He had thrown in his lot with Anglo-India by marrying a country woman…and already felt surprised by his past heroism. Would he today defy all his own people for the sake of a strange Indian? Aziz was a memento, a trophy, they were proud of each other, yet they must inevitably part’ (p. 303).
I think Forster makes it pretty clear that throughout the process of their friendship, in spite of genuine affections, both Fielding and Aziz struggle to get past the ‘otherness’ of each other in his own eyes. They are also constantly conscious of the unbalanced positions which they inherit within the colonist-colonized power structure. Aziz’s responses to Fielding appear to be at times, emotional and unreasonable, though he refuses to admit his own biasness and thrusting of personal frustration regarding the ‘colonial enemy’ in their conversations. Fielding’s reflections towards the end of the novel also implies that he finally finds himself succumbing to the prevailing notion that the East-West divide is ultimately impossible to cross and he assumes an even more complict position with his marriage, which further consolidates his Anglo-Indian identity.

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