Howards End

by

E. M. Forster

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Paul Wilcox Character Analysis

The youngest child in the Wilcox family, Paul has a brief, failed romance with Helen Schlegel when she stays at Howards End. He goes to Nigeria to make his fortune off of England’s colony there. When Charles goes to jail, he comes back to England to run the family business in African rubber. He resents giving ownership of Howards End to Margaret Schlegel and treats her rudely.

Paul Wilcox Quotes in Howards End

The Howards End quotes below are all either spoken by Paul Wilcox or refer to Paul Wilcox. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Class and Privilege Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Dover Thrift Editions edition of Howards End published in 2002.
Chapter 4 Quotes

“When I saw all the others so placid, and Paul mad with terror in case I said the wrong thing, I felt for a moment that the whole Wilcox family was a fraud, just a wall of newspapers and motor-cars and golf-clubs, and that if it fell I should find nothing behind it but panic and emptiness.”

Related Characters: Helen Schlegel (speaker), Margaret Schlegel, Paul Wilcox
Related Symbols: Cars and Walks
Page Number: 17
Explanation and Analysis:

“The truth is that there is a great outer life that you and I have never touched—a life in which telegrams and anger count. Personal relations, that we think supreme, are not supreme there. There love means marriage settlements, death, death duties. So far I’m clear. But here my difficulty. This outer life, though obviously horrid; often seems the real one—there’s grit in it. It does breed character. Do personal relations lead to sloppiness in the end?”

“Oh, Meg—, that’s what I felt, only not so clearly, when the Wilcoxes were so competent, and seemed to have their hands on all the ropes.”

Related Characters: Margaret Schlegel (speaker), Helen Schlegel (speaker), Paul Wilcox
Page Number: 18
Explanation and Analysis:
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Paul Wilcox Character Timeline in Howards End

The timeline below shows where the character Paul Wilcox appears in Howards End. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 1
Class and Privilege Theme Icon
Capitalism Theme Icon
...Tibby, who is suffering from hay fever. Helen writes that the Wilcox children—Charles, Evie, and Paul—and their father, Henry, all suffer from hay fever as well, but are more stoic about... (full context)
Class and Privilege Theme Icon
Capitalism Theme Icon
Gender Theme Icon
...Helen’s last, brief letter, she tells her sister that she has fallen in love with Paul. (full context)
Chapter 2
Class and Privilege Theme Icon
Gender Theme Icon
...Helen. When Margaret returns home, she finds a telegram from Helen saying her fling with Paul is all over, but it’s too late to stop Mrs. Munt. (full context)
Chapter 3
Class and Privilege Theme Icon
Gender Theme Icon
...Howards End. He offers to drive her back with him. Unfortunately, she mistakes him for Paul and begins to talk to him about Helen’s news. He is shocked to hear that... (full context)
Chapter 4
Class and Privilege Theme Icon
Capitalism Theme Icon
Colonialism and Imperialism Theme Icon
...and their robust, sensible arguments against all her idealistic beliefs. She fell in love with Paul simply because he embodied the charisma of his family and his home, and he was... (full context)
Class and Privilege Theme Icon
Capitalism Theme Icon
Colonialism and Imperialism Theme Icon
...should cause such horrible “telegrams and anger” in the hands of people like Charles and Paul Wilcox. They question whether this life, “a life in which telegrams and anger count,” is... (full context)
Chapter 7
Class and Privilege Theme Icon
Capitalism Theme Icon
...have moved into the house next door. Aunt Juley is anxious that a proximity to Paul may rekindle Helen’s disastrous infatuation, but Margaret declares that there can be no great risk... (full context)
Chapter 8
Capitalism Theme Icon
Gender Theme Icon
...trouble that occurred last summer. She apologizes for the discourtesy, claiming only that Helen and Paul should not meet again. (full context)
Class and Privilege Theme Icon
Capitalism Theme Icon
Gender Theme Icon
...Margaret should not have written such a letter, because she had called to say that Paul has left for Nigeria. Margaret feels terrible for having forgotten that Paul would be leaving... (full context)
Chapter 12
Capitalism Theme Icon
Gender Theme Icon
...recent visit and interview at Oxford. It has been barely six months since Helen and Paul’s ill-fated engagement. (full context)
Chapter 13
Class and Privilege Theme Icon
Capitalism Theme Icon
Colonialism and Imperialism Theme Icon
Gender Theme Icon
...‘not to be married’ was a hundred years ago,” she declares. She expresses admiration for Paul Wilcox, who has worked so industriously in Nigeria. Tibby scoffs. (full context)
Chapter 19
Class and Privilege Theme Icon
Capitalism Theme Icon
Colonialism and Imperialism Theme Icon
Gender Theme Icon
...the flaws in the Wilcox mentality that became painfully apparent in the terrible debacle with Paul: “‘Panic and emptiness,’ sobbed Helen. ‘Don’t!’” Margaret admits that she does not love Henry but... (full context)
Chapter 20
Class and Privilege Theme Icon
Capitalism Theme Icon
Gender Theme Icon
...help it. They settle that Henry’s money must go to his children, Charles, Evie, and Paul, foremost, while Margaret continues to live off of her own generous means. “We’ve none too... (full context)
Class and Privilege Theme Icon
Gender Theme Icon
...hurried away as if ashamed, and for an instant she was reminded of Helen and Paul.” (full context)
Chapter 34
Class and Privilege Theme Icon
Capitalism Theme Icon
Gender Theme Icon
...her sister has become unduly fixated on the Wilcoxes ever since the whole crisis with Paul four years ago. Tibby also finds Helen’s refusal to see them highly unusual and suggests... (full context)
Chapter 39
Class and Privilege Theme Icon
Capitalism Theme Icon
Gender Theme Icon
...in Ducie Street. Charles is badly prejudiced against Helen, stemming from her disastrous entanglement with Paul. He suspects that she and Margaret are trying to get Howards End, and he feels... (full context)
Chapter 44
Class and Privilege Theme Icon
Capitalism Theme Icon
Colonialism and Imperialism Theme Icon
Gender Theme Icon
Paul calls Margaret into the house, where Henry, Evie, Dolly and he are sitting in an... (full context)