We have changed our privacy policy. In addition, we use cookies on our website for various purposes. By continuing on our website, you consent to our use of cookies. You can learn about our practices by reading our privacy policy.
© 2016 Shmoop University, Inc. All rights reserved.
GO TO SAT PREP GO TO ACT PREP
Howards End

Howards End

  

by E.M. Forster

Frieda Mosebach

Character Analysis

Cousin Frieda, a delightful and cheerful young lady, really only serves one purpose: to represent the world outside England. Specifically, she represents Germany, the other side of the Schlegels' heritage. Her conflicts over nationality with Aunt Juley are only half-joking, and every time they argue playfully about whose nation is superior, it's always with a slight edge of seriousness. After all, let's not forget the fact that this novel was written in 1910, only four years before a certain Archduke was assassinated (leading to World War I) and the world changed forever.

However, Frieda certainly doesn't represent Germany as an evil, challenging nation – rather, we become quite fond of her, as her cousins are, and for good reason. She's fresh, funny, and generally a lovely person. This makes the whole pre-WWI "England is good, Germany is bad" dichotomy problematic. Instead, Forster invites us to consider the possibility that things aren't that simple: maybe England and Germany are both good and bad.

Advertisement