Around the World in Eighty Days | Study Guide

Jules Verne

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Around the World in Eighty Days | Chapter 14 : In which Phileas Fogg travels the whole length of the wonderful valley of the Ganges without thinking it worth a look | Summary



Kiouni the elephant rushes the passengers to their destination while Mrs. Aouda sleeps off her drug-induced state. They reach the railroad station in Allahabad and wait to board the train to Calcutta. Phileas Fogg stays with the young woman in a waiting room while Passepartout buys her clothes, shoes, and toiletries. Fogg pays the elephant driver the promised fee and gives the man Kiouni for helping save Aouda. When Mrs. Aouda awakens, Fogg explains who they are and that they are taking her to Hong Kong to escape the dangers she will face if she stays in India. She tells the men she has a relative in Hong Kong who could give her a home. Sir Cromarty leaves his companions in Benares to rejoin his troops.


Sir Cromarty tells Fogg Mrs. Aouda will suffer a horrible existence if she remains in India. Fogg sublimates his emotions, revealing only impassivity. He says he will "consider the situation, and then make up his mind." Before they board the train, he demonstrates his integrity when he not only pays the elephant driver for his help but also gives him Kiouni as a present for his commitment to them. His gift of the expensive elephant is not as surprising as his words: "Take it, guide, but even then I shall be in your debt." Until this moment, he has never shown appreciation for another's help. He continues to show concern when he assures Mrs. Aouda he will take care of her until she is safely with her relatives in Hong Kong. On the train trip to Calcutta, Fogg shows no interest in the valley of the Ganges. Only the plights of victims catch his interest, never scenery. They arrive in Calcutta on October 25, on schedule. Twenty-three days have passed since Phileas Fogg left London, and he is exactly on time. He shows no remorse for losing the two extra days he had accumulated earlier in his journey.

Verne's colonial perspective is further on display here; notice how he names the elephant, but the Indian elephant driver remains nameless.

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