Illustration of of Babar the elephant character holding a book while in a hot air balloon in the center. The hot air balloon is rainbow striped with black text on a blue banner. Two thin black line circular borders are around the center of the button with black text in different fonts curving between the black circular borders. All on white background.
Originally written by Jean de Brunhoff for his children, “The Story of Babar” was published in 1931. After his untimely death at the age of 37 years old, son Laurent de Brunhoff picked up where his father left off. The incredibly popular picture books have delighted children for generations with a half-dozen books, a tv series, and merchandise. Critics of the stories have described the books as “imperialist propaganda” and “an allegory for French colonialism”. Others believe the critics miss the true nature of the story which they believe highlights the issues of the day. In the 1990s, a partnership between cable channel HBO, which aired the series, fast-food restaurant Arby’s, and the popular children’s book developed. Arby’s included Babar themed toys in their Babar's World Tour Adventure Meal from 1990-1992.
Gopnik, A., 2008. Freeing the Elephants. [online] The New Yorker. Available at: <https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2008/09/22/freeing-the-elephants> [Accessed 11 May 2021].
Kids Meal Wiki. 2011. Babar's World Tour Adventure Meal (Arby's, 1990). [online] Available at: <https://kidsmeal.fandom.com/wiki/Babar%27s_World_Tour_Adventure_Meal_(Arby%27s,_1990)> [Accessed 11 May 2021].
PenguinRandomhouse.com. 2021. The Story of Babar by Jean De Brunhoff: 9780394805757 | PenguinRandomHouse.com: Books. [online] Available at: <https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/20204/the-story-of-babar-by-jea... [Accessed 11 May 2021].