* Date : 2017-01-09
Novelist Jo Jung-rae, Korea's master of literature, who has a piercing insight on the time periods and history
We sit down with novelist Jo Jung-rae, whose activities are unprecedented in the Korean and the global literary circles, as he has been very active with his works.
"There are no citizens who had led depressing and poor lives like our people, I realized that if no one wrote about the history of our people, there was no future for us."
He decided to write the epic historical trilogy which pierces through Korean modern and contemporary history when he saw the citizens bleeding from the Gwangju Democratic Movement in May of 1980. He wrote 32 volumes and it look him 20 years to write, but the process wasn't an easy one for him.
"Taebaek Mountain Range" began the first chapter of the epic trilogy. This novel was swept up in arguments and controversies, and in 1994, Jo Jung-rae experienced a lot of hardship when he was suspected of violating the national security law.
His epic historical trilogy "Taebaek Mountain Range," "Arirang" and "Han River" have become classics in the Korean literature. They are known as the trilogy of works on Korean modern history, and sales reached a record-breaking number of over 13 million copies.
He made his debut 47 years ago, and has been writing for almost half a century. Jo Jung-rae wrote many works including "The Human Jungle" (2013) and "Wild Flowers are also Flowers" (2017) which give a realistic picture of our society.
In the near future, he will write a book with the theme 'what does the nation mean to the citizens?'
Let us learn more about his writer's spirit, as well as the life of novelist Jo Jung-rae on The INNERview.