The Creator as Critic and Other Writings by E.M. Forster


E.M. Forster, whose novels A Room with a View, Howards End, and A Passage to India probe the values of the English middle class, is recognized as one of the twentieth century’s most distinguished authors. He was also a highly respected literary critic. The Creator as Critic contains more than 40 of Forster’s hitherto-unpublished essays, lectures, and memoirs, spanning the period 1898 to 1960. They reflect his views on a wide range of authors: Coleridge, Tolstoy, Pater, Wilde, James, Hardy, Butler, Housman, Kipling, Joyce, Lawrence, Proust, Cavafy, and others.

The Creator as Critic also presents the original texts of some 30 broadcasts made by Forster for the BBC between 1928 and 1959. These radio talks, collected for the first time in this volume, are the thoughtful and thought-provoking products of Forster’s active engagement with the literary, political, and social events of his time.


The work collected here, or published for the first time, is gathered under four general headings: Talks and Lectures, Essays, Other Memoirs and Memoranda, and Broadcasts. As these suggest, the emphasis falls mainly on a special Forsterian voice, always urbane, at times disarmingly casual, and at moments formal and self-aware. The collection offers several pleasures, not least a prose style of signal distinction -- John Stape

"A remarkable feat of scholarship..."

Because Heath knows Forster so well and is able to hold all the texts ready for citation and comparison, he offers many probing and insightful observations.


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