Social concern as a theme in the selected novels of Munshi Premchand
Novel, by and large, is considered as an imaginative story of a nation or as a prose epic of the core values of a society. These values reflect the internal conflict of men and women of a particular age and the pulls and pushes of socio-economic network lend them validity and importance. The dialects experienced by individuals provide raw material to the creative writer who with the aid of imagination turns this stuff into a work of fiction. The novel as a literary genre is new to India. As a genre it got further enriched in the hands of Premchand who made it a popular medium to entertain the people and to offer a critique of the hegemonic power structures of the society. It coincided with the emergence of middle class in India which was serving as active agents of the British commercial and bureaucratic interests in India. Premchand perfected the genre of the novel by making it a medium of radical change in man and society. It is not the reformist zeal but a serious concern for the downtrodden or the subalterns of the society of his days which makes Premchand a famous writer. No doubt, the problems of Premchand’s age were different and more intricate than that of his predecessors. But Premchand not only acknowledges the existence and value of an individual in social context and environment but he also believes in a realistic portrayal and analysis of problems. His aim as a writer is the betterment of society. In this sense the social realism of Premchand is more positive and progressive than any other writer of his age.