the story of babar


A piece of children’s book history is now on display at Harvard’s Houghton Library: The library has acquired the sketches and proofs that led to Jean de Brunhoff’s ABC de Babar, first published in Paris in 1934.

Jean’s Babar books were inspired by the stories his wife, pianist Cécile de Brunhoff, told their children at bedtime. Jean wrote and illustrated seven Babar books before his death in 1937. After 1937, Jean and Cécile’s son, Laurent, picked up where his father left off, writing and illustrating more than 40 books about the beloved elephant.


Taiye Selasi: I’m a Multi-local Afropolitan

Meet the new star of English literature, Taiye Selasi.

In this interview Taiye Selasi talks about identity, immigration and what it means to be multi-local, as well as about her debut novel ’Ghana Must Go’ on family relations, the different characters of the book, and the dream of finding something you are good at.

Tayie Selasi explains that she, and her characters, are looking for a way to have ”a story which is human, no more and no less.” Having a proud sense of self has nothing to do with wealth, which is why not succeeding can be devastating for someone who has left their home in search of a space to be who they wanted to be. Also, there is plenty to write about family, and family relations, Selasi explains.

Taiye Selasi was born in London, England in 1979 to Nigerian and Ghanian parent, and raised in Boston, USA. 

In 2010 Penguin Press bought Selasi’s unfinished novel ‘Ghana Must Go’ which has now been sold in 16 countries. ’Ghana Must Go’ (2013) is a profound, emotional story of family betrayal, transformation and love. The novel singled Taiye Selasi out as the new star of English literature, backed up by Salman Rushdie and Toni Morrison.

Selasi has written one novel, 'Ghana Must Go’ and two short stories, 'Bye-Bye, Babar’ and 'The Sex Lives of African Girls’. In 2012 Selasi launched “2030 Twelve,” a four-part documentary about African millennials in North, South, East, West Africa, and in 2013 she was selected as one of Granta’s 20 Best Young British Writers.