International and Comparative Librarianship

S. R. Ranganathan, P. N. Kaula, R. N. Sharma, J. F. Harvey, D. J. Foskett, J. P. Danton, M. M. Jackson, etc.
This Blogosphere has a slant towards India [a.k.a Indica, Indo, South-Asian, Oriental, Bharat, Hindustan, Asian-Indian (not American Indian)].

Sunday, July 08, 2007

Good old Indian folk tales need a magic genie

New Delhi: Once upon a time, traditional folk tales from the Panchatantra or, say, stories of Akbar and Birbal used to be hugely popular with Indian children. But ask a kid today about her favourite book, and chances are she will name an Enid Blyton, a Nancy Drew, a Hardy Boy and - even more likely - a Harry Potter.

To give an example, the pre-bookings for the seventh edition of the Harry Potter series to be released July 21, is escalating at a rapid rate. The sixth in the series sold a smashing 160,000 copies in India last year.

The story is entirely different for Indian folk tales and other children's books. A predictable storyline, monotonous illustrations, lots of moral baggage and more importantly sloppy marketing have led to their taking a beating. continue

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