Due to the International Children’s Book Week, we visited the activities prepared by      Amasya University Children’s Library between the dates of 12-16 November 2018. Director of Center of Pre-school Education Practice & Research in Amasya University, Asst. Prof. Erkan Çer stated “Amasya University Children’s Library is the first in the region and the second one founded within a University in Turkey. The Library contains 5 thousand books addressed for child readers”

Within the time frame of International Children’s Book Week there will be many activities conducted in Amasya University Children’s Library. We as the Department of English Translation and Interpreting attended the activity inaugurated by Education Faculty Dean Prof. Dr. Mustafa Kandemir.

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The play Mor Balık was staged in activities like video show, book vitalization and theatre.2 (6)

Books which open new doors for the worlds of children are valuable in shaping our future. These new doors opened by our children  who achieve it by reading the products of their own culture, also being able to have the chance to read other nations books is  an invaluable opportunity for them to grow up as people with a universal view.

Oscar Wilde’s The Happy Prince (1888), Lewis Carroll’s Alice in The Wonderland (1865), Johanna Sypri’s Heidi (1881), Eleanor H. Porter’s Pollyanna (1913), Antoine de Saint- Exupéry’s The Little Prince (1943) and many books have become classics both in Turkish and international children’s literature. How could they have been known in other cultures and languages if they weren’t translated? Italian writer Carlo Collodi’s Pinocchio in which its dream is to become a real boy, has become the worlds most translated book by being translated into more than 260 languages. Adaptations like stage plays, monuments and movies, originating from this book, enriched experience and feelings of children with different languages.  Can the role of translation, for the forming of audience consisting of adults as much as children be ignored? The Harry Potter series listed as one of the world’s best sellers with a sales figure of 450 million as of 2013 has been translated to 73 different languages including Turkish. Adaptations including movies, games, stage plays and voiced books.

However, it is clear that there is a need to create more awareness on the subject of translation of children's books. Writer of the book The Oxford Companion to Children’s Literature, Daniel Hahn determined after counting the number of children books in a big bookstore that out of 2.047 children books 2018 are written in English and only 29 are translated children books, which he stated that it saddened him. Children’s world is universal. Every book you read makes you discover, wonder and be surprised. As for translated children books mean more experience worlds. It helps children give a meaning to the world. It points out accumulated richness of language and cultural variety, the yesterday and the tomorrow in the world we live in. Hahn being a translator himself, points out that English stays distant and deprived of a “world” of richness that can be presentable to the child readers. The variety and richness in the children books created in our language Turkish, can only be transferred by translation into other languages just like  from another languages into Turkish.  

Because of this reason, as the Amasya University English Translation and Interpreting Department, we care about this activity and we are honoured to have a children’s library in our university. We invite all our students to the International Children’s Book Week celebration activities.