Published in , just months before Premcand's death, "The Shroud" "Kafan" is generally thought to be the author's best, blackest, and most powerful short story. Set in an Indian village, the milieu of Premcand's best works, on a dark, chilly winter night, it is the story of a father, Ghisu, and his son, Madhav, who sit at the door of their hut roasting potatoes stolen from a neighbor's field. Budhiya, Madhav's young wife of one year, is inside groaning in childbirth. Neither man responds to her moans.
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Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read. Want to Read saving…. Want to Read Currently Reading Read. Other editions. Enlarge cover. Error rating book. Refresh and try again. Open Preview See a Problem? Details if other :.
Thanks for telling us about the problem. Return to Book Page. This short story first published by Jamia, in is a sharp critique on human selfishness. A quintessential Premchand story.
Get A Copy. Published first published January 1st More Details Original Title. Other Editions Friend Reviews. To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. Lists with This Book. Community Reviews.
Showing Average rating 4. Rating details. More filters. Sort order. Jul 03, Shabana Mukhtar rated it really liked it Shelves: urdu. Part of syllabus in school. Nobody writes better short stories than Munsi Premchand. Kafan must be one of the best stories in not just in Hindi but world literature. Marcus Garvey truly captures the spirit of Kafan as follows: "Poverty is a hellish state to be in.
It is no virtue. It is a crime. To be poor is to be hungry without possible hope of food; to be sick without hope of medicine; to be tired and sleepy without a place to lay one's head; to be naked without the hope of clothing; to be despised and comfortless. To be poor is to be a fit subject for crime and hell. Premchand in this short story shows us the true ugly face of poverty. Poverty dehumanizes human beings. There is not much difference between an animal and poor person.
It Robs us of the things which makes us human like compassion, sympathy, self respect, magnanimity, self actualization etc. Maslow also said that if the basic needs are not fulfilled the higher needs remains untouched forget about fulfilling them. Its a black comedy. Its humor is just a mask to hide the ugly truth which Munshiji wants to convey. It would have been comic if the implications are not so horrible.
But what makes it contender for truly great story of world is that if it leads you to start thinking you will definitely become a better human being. Some dalit activist in India say that it is too casteist and as the protagonists are from lower caste it shows them in bad light. But i disagree. I think Premchand has the utmost respect for the dalits and he constantly brought out their plight through his writings.
Please read and you will be a changed person. View 1 comment. May 03, Abhishek rated it really liked it. A very heart-touching short story by famous hindi writer. A usual pattern always i saw in his writing like related to social problem, simple language, some heart-touching movement, real presentation of human nature, poverty and a very different kind of ending.
I think, since he was from a mediocre family this was the reason that he can easily present the real picture of problem faced by the lower group of society and the situations are very realistic.
Some o hmm Some of readers might be disagree with my opinion but it is only because they haven't seen or experienced such poverty.
Jul 18, Kshitij rated it it was amazing Shelves: indian-hindi-authors. This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Munshi Premchand is a pioneer. Should we, the readers, be angry at the m Munshi Premchand is a pioneer. Should we, the readers, be angry at the madhav and Ghisu? As a rule, I like reading Premchand. He narrated simple narratives that subtly veer your attention towards the larger concerns - not only of the protagonist, but of people in general.
However, I feel that this book could have been compiled better. Maybe if they selected a story of each theme. Another, is that the translation is not at par with experience of reading him in Hindi. Other than that, the book is very good. These are stories you c As a rule, I like reading Premchand. These are stories you can read in any mood, they raise questions regarding patriarchy, of our understanding of piousness, of our hypocritical stances at creating an equal society, and of the woes of farmers, that have not changed a bit in all these years that have passed since his writing.
I had a story of his for my Hindi paper in college, which had to do with office politics, if that were included, or some story on those themes, the compilation could have been better. Nonetheless, this has been a good read. View 2 comments. The book I read on a single evening! The short stories are too good! Each one captures the true spirit of rural India Like Jim Corbett's "My India" this one too speaks about the lives of simple village people , their basic needs and their simple ways , culminating into unforgettable , heart warming stories.
This was the first Premchand book I read and am definitely looking forward to more! May 06, Ankita rated it it was amazing. A poignant and moving account of the mayhem that takes place in a family when the lady of the house dies in childbirth. A stirring tale describing poverty, hunger and helplessness of India's poor. A masterpiece. No match.
This makes me want to explore more of Hindi Literature. That's all I'm saying! Sep 25, Sidharth Vardhan rated it it was amazing Shelves: indian , short-stories , bestest. Some of the poor do turn cynic the way the two protigonists did - not so surprising given the hardships poor in general have to suffer through.
In fact, it is hard to judge them despite their atitude towards the dying and later dead wo "It is a strange ritual which requires a new shroud for one who never had sufficient cloth all her life. In fact, it is hard to judge them despite their atitude towards the dying and later dead woman. Imagine times when wages were so low, the idle were hardly worse off than hard-working -the rich are probably more to blame. It is sad to see the rich giving money for shroud when they wouldn't show same charity by giving money for her medicine when she was alive.
This is my first Premchand book of short stories. Ideally would have read it in Hindi but ended up reading it in English thanks to my impulse buying.
Premchand has again touched numerous malice of erstwhile Indian society through his heart-touching stories. Of all the stories, I loved 'Intoxication' the most. He has delved deeper into the human psyche to explain how there is a thin line, opportunity, that separates between a good and evil. It reminds me of the favorite quote of mine "to you the t This is my first Premchand book of short stories.
It reminds me of the favorite quote of mine "to you the truth is what you have experienced". I liked each and every story of it.
The Shroud (Kafan) by Premcand, 1936