chapter  4
Dialogue and power in E.M.Forster’s Howards End
ByR. A. Buck, Timothy R. Austin
Pages 15

E.M.Forster’s novel Howards End (1910/1973) is about the relationship between two families, the Schlegels and the Wilcoxes, and their relationships with a number of houses, of which Howards End is the most important one. It is also about the resilience of the artisticallyminded Schlegels: paradoxically, it is they who inherit Howards End, whereas the property-conscious, commercially-minded Wilcoxes are dispossessed. At the beginning, though, Henry Wilcox had acted against his wife’s last wish, when she wanted to bequeath Howards End to Margaret Schlegel, and had kept the house in the Wilcox family. But after Henry marries Margaret, the latter becomes the mistress of Howards End after all, and on her death the property will pass on to the son of Helen Schlegel, Margaret’s sister.