#003. Premchand and some more Hindi links.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007 by: PBC

This one for my friend Rakesh. Earlier planned to add it later. My favorite Hindi writer since 1978.


Premchand (1880-1936)

the man...
His real name was Dhanpat Rai but he is famous with his pen name of Premchand or Munshi Premchand. He was born in Pandepur, a village near Banaras (now Varanasi). His father Munshi Ajaib Lal was a clerk in the Postal Department. Premchand was just eight years old when his mother died. His grand-mother took the responsibility of raising him, but she died soon after that. Meanwhile his father married again and Premchand was left without the love of his father too.
He was married when he was 15 and was in the 9th grade. His father also died and after passing the intermediate he had to stop his study. He got a job as a teacher in the Primary School, after a series of promotion he became Deputy Inspectors of Schools. In response to Mahatma Gandhi call of non-cooperation with the British he quit his job. After that he devoted his full attention to writing. His first story appeared in the magazine Zamana published from Kanpur.

his novels...
Before Premchand; Nazeer Ahmad, Sarshar and Mirza Hadi Ruswa have written novels in Urdu. But Premchand has a unique place when it comes to Urdu novels and short stories. He emphasized in presenting the realities of life and he made Indian Villages his center of writing. His novels describe the problems faced by the villagers and poor and what could be the solutions. How the priests, local business folks (mahajan) and the landlords were exploiting the villagers. He also emphasized on the Hindu-Muslim unity. His famous works include Gau-daan, Maidan-e-Amal, Bay-waH, Chaugaan etc.

short stories...
It would not be wrong to say Premchand as the Father of Urdu Short- Stories. Short stories or afsana was started by Premchand. As with his novels, his afsanas, also mirrors the society that he lived in. With a break from the past his characters are not all good or bad but somewhere in between. His characters are based on real life people and as in real life sometime we see a good side or the bad side of the person.
Premchand's style of writing is simple and flowing some of his works shows very good use of satire and humor. His later works used very simple words and he started including Hindi words too to honestly portray his characters. In the later stages of his life He turned his attention to Hindi and now Premchand is claimed by both Urdu and Hindi literature as their own. His famous afsanas are qaatil ki maaN, zewar ka DibbaH, gilli DanDa, eidgaah, namak ka darogHaaH, kafan. His collected stories have been published as prem pachisi, prem battisi, wardaat, zaad-e-raah etc.

[Based on Urdu Adab ki Tareekh by Azeem-ul-haq Junaidi published by Educational Book House, Muslim University Market, Aligarh 200202 INDIA]

Premchand's Short Stories & Novels (Collection)

Esnips is gone...so links are (:

Who are interested, can ask me by e-mail.

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