Sixty-five years after his death Premchand remains the most outstanding figure in twentieth-century Hindi literature. His novels and short stories firmly established genres in Hindi, and his more than 300 stories contain his finest work. Characterized by compassion for the poor and indignation in the cruelty of the privileged classes, his stories present an incomparable panorama of North Indian life over the past hundred years, describing conditions and injustices that are all too common even today. There are vivid, dramatic portrayals of tradition-bound villages and cities, the turmoil of the Independence movement, and the violent clash of new and old ideas. Perhaps their greatest achievement is in the insightful representation of a dazzling variety of individual characters from every walk of life, every class and caste, in all their psychological complexity and with all their contradictions. Particularly striking are the many portraits of women, revolutionary for their time and still meaningful today. Premchand's work continues to be rediscovered and to captivate new generations of readers in India and abroad. In this collection, the translator has brought together a selection of Premchand's best stories, some well known and others not previously translated.The stories demonstrate the range of Premchand's genius as well as the evolution of his narrative technique and his vision that combines a close understanding of Indian society with a tragic sense of life that has universal relevance. This is a delightful book for avid readers of short stories, and an invaluable one for those interested in Indian literature and culture.