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Chapters 33-36


These four chapters see Maurice travelling to Penge in August, as arranged with Clive earlier, to take part in the traditional cricket match.

Ch33 is focused on Clive and we find out a little more of his attitude to Maurice, and to his marriage. He takes joy in the utter conventionality of it, and Anne appears happy to share in it. It's implied that it's not a passionate marriage; Anne came to it without knowing anything about sex, and it suits Clive that they don't talk about it.

Maurice isn't really looking forward to the visit and is hurt that Clive is not there to meet him. Instead, he meets Anne, who finds him agreeable enough even if she finds him a bit rough and hard--echoing the acceptance he had on first meeting Clive's mother and sister who started to like him when he told them to mind their own business. And it keeps raining--Maurice doesn't stop being aware of it in these chapters.

Throughout chs 34 to 36, we get the odd reference to the gamekeeper: first seen by Maurice with the maids (the sight of which offends Maurice because the maids are not pretty), then helping the valet to move the piano after dinner, taking Maurice and Archie London to shoot rabbits the next day, refusing Maurice's tip the morning after, and finally as a face in the hedge. Reading the book for the first time, you'll probably not pay that much attention to them, but once you know what happens next, they are building towards giving Alec a quiet presence before we start paying him attention.

Courting couple by oldpixels on flickr, used under Creative Commons Attribution-Non Commercial-No derivate works licence

Ever since Risley mentioned hypnosis, Maurice has been thinking about it, and finally now that he's visiting Clive he makes up his mind to arrange an appointment with Lasker Jones. Half of him thinks it's quackery, the other half wishes for a cure. Prior to the appointment, he's tasked with writing a statement of his life so far, and he works on it when Clive makes an attempt to make them closer again by closing the door on the past.

Hypnosis by malavoda(away) on flickr, used under Creative Commons Attribution-Non commercial-No derivate works licence

Lasker Jones is able to give Maurice a name for his "condition", "congenital homosexuality", and tells Maurice the majority of his patients come to him because of it. The first session finds Maurice open to suggestion, seeing a painting on an empty wall. The next appointment is set, and meanwhile Lasker JOnes recommends quiet countrylife, so Maurice sets out for Penge again.

Questions:

  • Clive's marriage, is it as happy and content as Ch33 suggests?

  • Any thoughts on Anne?

  • What do you think of Maurice's decision to see a hypnotist?

  • At the end of Ch35, Maurice feels he's become a "bundle of voices", what do you make of it?



Photo credits:
Courting couple by OldPixels on Flickr, used under Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No derivate works licence
Hypnosis, malavoda (away) on Flickr, used under Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No derivate works licence
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