Genuine and Distorted Communication in Autobiographical Writing: E.M. Forster's 'West Hackhurst' and Its Contexts

A3 Book section, Chapters in research books

Internal Authors/Editors

Publication Details

List of Authors: Jason Finch
Editors: Roger D. Sell, Adam Borch, Inna Lindgren
Place: Amsterdam
Publication year: 2013
Publisher: John benjamins
Book title: The Ethics of Literary Communication: Genuineness, Directness, Indirectness
Title of series: Dialogue Studies
Number in series: 19
Start page: 61
End page: 80
ISBN: 9789027210364
eISBN: 9789027271686
ISSN: 1875-1792


E.M. Forster's memoir of life in Surrey and relations with his ground landlords there the Farrer family, concentrating on the period 1925-46, remained unpublished at his death. Although it seems to have a simple chronological narrative, and to give vent to some pretty raw and indiscreet confessions and complaints, I argue in this chapter that it should be understood as an example of 'autobiografiction' (Saunders 2010), a complex and artful combination of elements of fiction and life-writing. The importance of 'West Hackhurst' as a piece of literature is both its long-neglected importance to Forster's own view of his life, and as a powerful meditation on, and representation of, the failure of human communication.


Biography, Forster, E.M. (1879-1970), Memory

Last updated on 2020-29-09 at 02:58