La Machine nous a volé le sens de l'espace et du toucher, elle a brouillé toute relation humaine, elle a paralysé nos corps et nos volontés, et maintenant, elle nous oblige à la vénérer. La Machine se développe - mais pas selon nos plans. La Machine agit - mais pas selon nos objectifs. Nous ne sommes rien de plus que des globules sanguins circulant dans ses artères.
Forster. Quelques années avant le célèbre Avec vue sur l'Arno (adapté au cinéma en 1986 par James Ivory sous le titre Chambre avec vue), Forster y explore déjà le thème du voyage initiatique et du choc des cultures: la société anglaise étriquée de Sawston confrontée aux sortilèges d'un petit coin d'Italie, modelé sur la cité toscane de San Gimignano.
"Philippe fixait son regard sur le campanile d'Airolo. Mais ce sont les images du beau mythe d'Endymion qu'il voyait. Cette femme restait, jusqu'à la fin, une déesse.
Nul amour ne pouvait être dégradant pour elle : elle était hors de ce qui se dégrade. Ce dernier épisode, qu'elle jugeait si vil, qu'il jugeait si tragique, lui offrit, en tout cas, une beauté suprême. Philippe se sentit porté à une hauteur telle qu'il eût pu, désormais, sans regret, avouer à la jeune fille sa propre adoration.
A quoi bon ? Tout le merveilleux était arrivé."
'"You talk as if a god had made the Machine," cried the other. "I believe that you pray to it when you are unhappy. Men made it, do not forget that."' E.M. Forster is best known for his exquisite novels, but these two affecting short stories brilliantly combine the fantastical with the allegorical. In 'The Machine Stops', humanity has isolated itself beneath the ground, enmeshed in automated comforts, and in 'The Celestial Omnibus' a young boy takes a trip his parents believe impossible.
This book contains The Machine Stops and A Celestial Omnibus.
Biographical noteEdward Morgan Forster was born in London in 1879. He wrote six novels, four of which appeared before the First World War, Where Angels Fear to Tread (1905), The Longest Journey (1907), A Room with a View (1908), and Howard's End (1910). An interval of fourteen years elapsed before he published A Passage to India. It won both the Prix Femina Vie Heureuse and the James Tait Black Memorial Prize. Maurice, his novel on a homosexual theme, finished in 1914, was published posthumously in 1971. He also published two volumes of short stories; two collections of essays; a critical work, Aspects of the Novel; The Hill of Devi, a fascinating record of two visits Forster made to the Indian State of Dewas Senior; two biographies; two books about Alexandria (where he worked for the Red Cross in the First World War); and, with Eric Crozier, the libretto for Britten's opera Billy Budd. He died in June 1970. Main descriptionA meticulously-observed drama of class warfare, E.M. Forster's Howards End explores the conflict inherent within English society, unveiling the character of a nation as never before. This Penguin Classics edition includes an introduction and notes by David Lodge. 'Only connect...' A chance acquaintance brings together the preposterous bourgeois Wilcox family and the clever, cultured and idealistic Schlegel sisters. As clear-eyed Margaret develops a friendship with Mrs Wilcox, the impetuous Helen brings into their midst a young bank clerk named Leonard Bast, who lives at the edge of poverty and ruin. When Mrs Wilcox dies, her family discovers that she wants to leave her country home, Howards End, to Margaret. Thus as Forster sets in motion a chain of events that will entangle three different families, he brilliantly portrays their aspirations to personal and social harmony. David Lodge's introduction provides an absorbing and eloquent overture to the 1910 novel that established Forster's reputation as an important writer, and that he himself later referred to as 'my best novel'. This edition also contains a note on the text, suggestions for further reading, and explanatory notes. E. M. Forster (1879-1970) was a noted English author and critic and a member of the Bloomsbury group. His first novel, Where Angels Fear To Tread appeared in 1905. The Longest Journey appeared in 1907, followed by A Room With A View (1908), based partly on the material from extended holidays in Italy with his mother. Howards End (1910) was a story that centered on an English country house and dealt with the clash between two families, one interested in art and literature, the other only in business. Maurice was revised several times during his life, and finally published posthumously in 1971. If you enjoyed Howard's End, you might like Forster's A Room with a View, also available in Penguin Classics.
Tells the story of Lilia Herriton, who proves to be an embarrassment to her late husband's family as, in the small Tuscan town of Monteriano, she begins a relationship with a much younger Italian man - classless, uncouth and unsuitable.