The literary feat of the ‘Hill English Literature’ became a topic of our discussion when a friend of mine was making up his mind to pursue his research on the hill writers writing in English language. By Hill English Literature, I mean the literature produced by our hill writers in English language. We have a very rich Nepali literature and its literary history is upgrading along with the contribution of many great, matured as well as budding writers writing in Nepali language. No doubt, even the writers engaged in English language have generated literature of high merit; I must mention the name of few prominent writers –
Chetan Raj Shrestha’s, “The King’s Harvest,” “The Light of his Clan,” Prajwal Parajuly’s “The Gurkha’s daughter,” “Land where I flee,” Man Prasad Subba’s “Primitive Village”(translated work from his Nepali poetry “Adim Busty”) are some of the literary texts of merit. Likewise, a few more writers are certainly keeping the spirit of Hill English literature alive. The problem is when we glimpse at the Hill English Literature on the context of number of recognized writers or the writers who are engaged in serious literary practices, we were quite surprised as we found out that there are only a handful of artists using their pen in international language. So the holistic development of Hill English Literature is too slow. There can be many factors for the gradual development; some of them are as follows:
(i) As we are living in a competitive world where we have a cut- throat competition for the job, the budding artist may lose their interest in writing; as the case of being established becomes a first priority. So even if they have a bit interest in creativity, it may fade away in the process of establishing oneself in life.
(ii) Due to lack of encouragement and proper platform for the budding artists, the upcoming artist may pen down their poems, stories or any other literary works only in their dairy without getting it published. As their works will not face criticism or appreciation, they may lose their interest in writing as the time passes. So their resource will not be utilized to its maxims.
(iii) Lack of English literary groups, literary magazines too contribute to the slow development of Hill English Literature.
If we glimpse at the overall scenario of talents and arts, our hill artists have excelled in different fields, be it in academics, sports, dance and many more. Now, it is the high time when we must think to broaden the horizon of Hill English Literature. It is through literature, we can present our natural scenic beauty to the world – We must write about our culture, history and our contemporary society.
Some of the ways by which we can solidify the hill English literature are as follows:
(i)All upcoming writers must be encouraged and motivated in such a way that they might have the feeling of continuing their creativity lifelong. The writers must be appreciated and felicitated in every part of their success. The momentum must be there and it must continue.
(ii)Although the large majority of youth are engaged in establishing their life, the part of it who is interested in creativity can certainly utilize their leisure time for writing. In this way too, they can contribute to literature and society.
(iii)More literary groups and associations must be formed. Artists must come in a circle, so that there can be proper exchange of thoughts and creative ideas.
(iv)Anthologies of Short stories, Poems, Essays must be published every year to keep the spirit of the literature alive. The government, cultural departments should offer financial aid for this initiative.
(v)Literary journal and creative magazine must be published periodically so that the writers can pen down their thoughts and be in touch with their creativity.
(vi)State and district level poetry, short stories, essays competition must be held to encourage our young literary artists
(vii)All educational institutions- schools, colleges, universities must encourage the students by bringing out creative magazine, organizing workshop, giving them support and encouraging them to move a step forward in the field of creativity or literary activities.
The time has come to give a new dimension to Hill English literature. The prophecy is that within a few decades, we must have large number of creative artists contributing to Hill English Literature so that we can have a large number of literary works to its credit. The time must come when the history of Hill English literature will be written in golden appreciable words. Our writers should be encouraged to write more in English literature so that maximum of our literary works can reach in international level. The following lines shall conclude this article.
“I have a prophecy,
Where I can visualize our Hill lads
Tandaving on their creativity,
Generating the perpetual verses,
Splendouring the world literature
And healing the Humanity.”
(Published in Sikkim Express dated 02.10.2016)
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