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Maurice

clive sexual whom school

a novel by E. M. Forster, published in 1971. Written in 1914, the novel remained unpublished for over fifty years, on account of its subject: the homosexual relationship between two young men, one of whom eventually conforms to social convention by marrying, the other of whom remains unmarried and unrepentant about his sexual inclinations. The novel opens with the latter, Maurice Hall, on the point of leaving his preparatory school to go to public school: its opening chapter includes the very funny account of the rather rudimentary sex education the boy receives from a well-meaning but misguided master, which results in his subsequent abhorrence of sexual relations with women. The next few chapters follow Maurice's career at school and at Cambridge University, where he first encounters the young man with whom he is to fall so disastrously in love, Clive Durham. Despite the fact that it is Clive who first confesses his love for Maurice, it soon becomes apparent that it is the latter who feels more strongly about the relationship, even risking being sent down because of it. The love affair—by now rather one-sided—continues for a few years after the two young men leave Cambridge, although it becomes clear that there is no longer any sexual dimension to the relationship. Then, in an outburst of candour, Clive tells Maurice of his intention to marry. Maurice, devastated by his friend's betrayal, at first attempts to ‘cure’ himself of his own homosexual feelings by undertaking a course of psychotherapy, which proves unsuccessful. Just as he is contemplating suicide or flight to the Continent, he meets Alec Scudder, one of the gamekeepers on Clive's estate, with whom he is at last able to reach some kind of emotional and sexual equilibrium.

Furnley Maurice, pseudonym of Frank Wilmot Biography - (1881–1942), pseudonym of Frank Wilmot, Unconditioned Songs, To God: From the Warring Nations [next]

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