Founder member of Mizoram People’s Conference, JV Hluna has authored five books in Mizo and English: Education and Missionaries in Mizoram, Church and Political Upheavals in Mizoram, Khandaih harhna, Zoram Walsh Missionary te chanchin, Zawlkhawpui Senmei chan Ni and Brig T Sailo chanchin. He tells Sanjana Baruah that it is important to ground literary creations in reality and Northeast abounds in such writings
What does literature mean to you? Do you think it has any relevance in our day-to-day lives? According to you, does it have anything to do with all that is happening around us?
Literature as they say is an imitation of life and an expression of what is experienced and witnessed in our day to day lives. As such, it offers a reflection of life – or a picture of life as one among us has understood it. It also provides a lesson for those who are willing to learn.
How close is your relation with literature in general, and with literature of the Northeast in particular?
As a student of history I have been particularly interested in literature that displays strong historical links, even if they are creative works of fiction. Although this is a personal preference, I also believe it is important to ground our creations in reality. The literature of the Northeast is particularly fertile in this aspect, probably because of our many social and political trials. Two out of five among my own books are biographical while two others were recollections on events that took place in Mizoram.
What future do you see for literature from the Northeast?
The great increase in the volume of works published from the Northeast in itself is evidence of its growth and development. Literature from the Northeast is also being increasingly read by a wider audience. More and more people are now interested in learning more about the relatively unknown region and looking at what this unique region has produced. With the emergence of younger and more talented writers, literature from the Northeast will soon find a place of pride, especially if more books are translated to reach a wider audience. Also, we have to offer opportunities for comparative study.
Name one book that had a lasting impact on you. In what way?
The Bible. Whenever I read it, I found new teachings for life, for the individual as well for the nation.
What book would you recommend for our readers and why?
I would recommend the Bible. It is a good literary text. It also has historical importance and moreover, the book contains moral teachings.