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Showing posts from September, 2016

Book Review: Nirmala by Munshi Premchand

The lack of social security can devastate a woman’s life. When Nirmala’s father is murdered by an old enemy, her fate takes a drastic and gloomy turn. Instead of getting married to Bhuvanmohan, a young man from a well-to-do family, she is forced to tie a knot with the widowed Totaram, a man her father’s age. Nirmala holds veneration towards that man and feels a sense of duty for him. On the other hand, Totaram expects her intimacy and seduces her, but Nirmala fails to resurface. She is Totaram’s second wife; moreover he has three grown-up sons. Of them, the eldest one - Mansaram - is a year older than 15-year-old Nirmala.

Totaram suspects that Nirmala and Mansaram are meddling into an affair. Thus, he sends his eldest son, Mansaram, to a hostel. This move brings clouds of gloominess into Mansaram’s life; as a result, he soon dies of sheer depression. Totaram’s second son blames him for his brother’s death, and he commits suicide in sheer frustration. His third son is lured away by a …