The present, fifth issue of RUBINAITIS focuse on books for the youngest category of readers those of preschool and primary school age. Two introductory articles tackle the issue of whether a child is capable of making a decision on the value of the book he or she is reading, whether the right to do this belongs to adults (article by Kęstutis Urba) and deal with the main features of a child as a reader (article by V. Mozūraitė), respectively.
Three authors have contributed to the “A r t i c l e s” section. The first one, Gražina Skabeikytė writes about the Lithuanian childrenʼs poet Anzelmas Matutis and finds him to have been a talented imitator of a small childʼs world, able to concentrate on the sunny side of things only. He looked at the nature through the eyes of a child while at the same time making it more modern through the use of city life realion. The article is entitled. “The Most Childish Childrenʼs Poet”.
“Picture Books for the Youngest” is the title of an article by Vita Mozūraitė in which the author introduces the system and classification of the type of books which have been gaining popularity in Lithuania lately out are still little known to the broader reading public.
The next article, contributed by Ingrida Korsakaitė, is a review of the book “The Tale of the Bean” (1970) by an expat Lithuanian artist Paulius Augius. In it, she concentrates on the illustrations of the book, republished in Lithuania last year and finds them simple and easily understandable to the young readers. The image of the huge Bean also resembles the Tree of Life characteristic of the Lithuanian world outlook. The authors also presents some biographical facts about Paulius Augius.
This issue carries two publications devoted to the 170th birth anniversary of the Italian author Carlo Collodi. In “The Adventures of Pinocchio the Feast of Didactics”, Kęstutis Urba makes a brief presentation of Carlo Collodi and proceeds to analyze, on the basis of research by foreign scholars, the characteristic features of the genre and style of “The Adventures of Pinocchio”, including its plot and the system of characters. The author of the article considers “The Adventures of Pinocchio” to be one of the most prominent fantasies of didactic type. Its didactics, howevers, is softened up by the dynamism of the plot and its comic character. Pinocchio is one of the first personages created on the principle of pedomorphism, that is by imitating the character of a child.
In the other publication devoted to Collodi, the Lithuanian art critic Irena Geniušienė discusses the illustrations appearing in the Lithuanian translations of “The Adventures of Pinocchio”. She has a negative view of drawings by the little-known artist Marajus which she characterises as “heavy” and “tasteless”. In contrast, the author friends the illustrations of the same book by the Polish artist J. M. Szancer “an attractive and poetic interpretation of the adventures of Pinocchio”. The author goes on to focuss on the illustrations by the Lithuanian artist Kęstutis Kasparavičius which appear in the 1993 publication of the book by the Coppenratʼ’s Kinderklassiker Publishers. “The illusionary material quality which is often seen in illustrations of childrenʼs books nowadays gains an extremely individual character and is far removed from naturalism in the amazingly precise and even scrupulous drawings by Kasparavičius”, writes the author.
The caption “I n t r o d u c t i o n s” contains another publication connected to Collodiʼs anniversary since it presents the Carlo Collodi National Foundation.
The traditional caption “Books of My C h i l d – h o o d” carries an interview with the poet Sigitas Geda, entitled “A Child is a Small Adult”, “Books which I read knowing that I was reading a literary work influenced me differently from the ones that I heard being read aloud by my father”; “If one wants to write for children, one must have a very clean soul”; “Who can tell what is suitable for children and what is not. Take the church paintings of the Middle Ages, for example who are they meant for?” These are but a few quotations from Sigitas Gedaʼs interview.
The caption “Letʼs Read Together, Mama” this time features Beatrix Potterʼs “Meet Peter Rabbit”, specially translated for this issue of RUBINAITIS as well as carrying a 10-year old readerʼs letter in which she shares her impressions of F. H. Burnettʼs “The Little Lord Fauntleroy”. The “B i b l i o g r a p h y” section contains an overview of Lithuanian periodical publications for children and young adults in 1990–1966.
Under “C r o n i c l e”, the readers will find information on various past events, exhibitions, seminars as well as childrenʼs writers anniversaries in 1997.
Translated into English by Rimantas Remeika
Žurnalas „Rubinaitis“, 1996 Nr. 2 (5)