Tooth fairies and little mice: cultural difference and wordplay in the translations of Mummy Never Told Me and other picturebooks by Babette Cole


  • Cristina Quesada Universidad de La Laguna


ABSTRACT: Foreign children’s literature has had a significant presence in Spain for some decades. Many picturebooks on the Spanish market today are written and illustrated by authors and artists from different countries. This includes many of the picturebooks by Babette Cole, which have been published in translation since the early 1990s. When observing the translations of Cole’s picturebooks, it is possible to find different methods used by translators in order to adapt the stories to the culture of the target country, which sometimes can lead to incoherence between word and image. In this article I will present an analysis of the Spanish translations of Babette Cole’s picturebooks, while having a look at some translations published in other languages such as French or Italian. This analysis will be developed by marking the techniques and challenges translators face regarding cultural differences and wordplay.

KEYWORDS: Picturebooks, Picturebook Translation, Translating Children’s Books, Translating Cultural References, Translating Wordplay