Helen Bannerman http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Helen_Bannerman
Life • Helen Bannerman (1862–1946) was the Scottish author of a number of children's books, the most notable being Little Black Sambo.
Life • She was born in Edinburgh and, because women were not admitted as students into British Universities, she sat external examinations set by the University of St. Andrews and attained the qualification of LLA.
Life • She lived for 32 years in Madras and a good proportion of her life in India, where her husband William Bannerman was an officer in the Indian Medical Service.
Life • The heroes of many of her books are recognizably south Indian or Tamil children from the illustrations and use of words like Little Black Sambo has Ghee, Tigers, Bazaar,
Life • Little Black Mingo has Jungle, Mugger, Dhobi, Mongoose, Little Black Quasha has Bazaar, Tigers, Little Black Quibba has Mangoes and Elephants and have nothing to do with Africa or African people.
Life • And despite the plots having no particularly racist overtones and usually celebrating the intelligence and ingenuity of the children, the name Sambo has become a slur against people of colour and the books have often been banned or censored.
Life • As a result of this controversy, a politically correct version co-authored by Fred Marcellino, The Story of Little Babaji, changed the names of the main characters. Earlier, in 1976,
Life • Platt & Munk Publishers similarly re-issued an edition of Little Black Sambo, with the parent's names identifiably Indian, and the picturesque illustrations updated to indicated decidedly Indian clothing.
Stories • The Story of Little Black Sambo, 1899 • Story of Little Black Mingo, 1901 • Story of little Black Quibba, 1902 • Little Degchie-Head: An Awful Warning to Bad Babas, 1903
External links • http://www.gutenberg.org/author/Helen_Bannerman • http://www.sterlingtimes.co.uk/bannerman.htm • http://www.sterlingtimes.co.uk/sambo.htm