This is A Room With A View study guide. One of the most important messages of A Room with a View is that people must decide for themselves what is truly beautiful and good, even if society calls it improper. During the Edwardian Era, conservative Victorian social mores had begun to give way to a more liberal, modern way of thinking, a move which Forster supported. “Have you ever noticed that there are people who do things which are most indelicate, and yet at the same time—beautiful?” asks Miss Alan.
She is referring to the Emersons, who have offered their rooms with a view to Lucy and Charlotte. Charlotte does not consider the offer appropriate, but it is made with the purest of intentions, from a desire only to make someone happy. Later, when George kisses Lucy in Italy, Charlotte Bartlett tries to make his bold expression of love into something dirty and wrong, and to paint him as a “cad.” The truth, as Lucy instinctively knows, is that George’s kiss may lack propriety—it may be indelicate—but it is also beautiful. Her acceptance of his love despite the objections of others around her shows that in the end she has learned to choose beauty over delicacy, and passion over propriety.
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Author: E. M. Forster
Published: October, 2009
ISBN #: 1449563031