Jørgen Andreas Bangor
jorgenb at ifi.uio.no
Tue Oct 25 23:04:30 CET 1994
Aftenposten about Barks.
Well, I didn't _quote_ Aftenposten. It was just me trying
to translate what I remembered from the article.
The article did _not_ compliment his new story. They meant
that his good stories are behind him.
The actual word they used to describe the new story was
"pale". I guess it doesn't have exactly the same meaning in
David and Wilmer:
Thanx for explainig what kind of character Br'er Rabbit is
(in the U.S.). I did "suspect" he was a hillbilly, but I
didn't know he was black. That must really be a problem for
Disney... or isn't he black anymore if they change his
Zomo - that's interesting. I didn't know he was a character
from black folklore. In Norway his name is simply Langore
(Long Ear), and he's nothing but a little animal living in
the forest (like Chip & Dale and Bongo), but Br'er Fox and
Br'er Bear is called Mikkel Rev and Bamse Brakar. These
are characters from Norwegian folk tales. The fox is always
making a fool of the bear.
At the moment I can't remember having ever seen any Disney
characters having a dialect in Norway (except Thursday...).
In the story about the square eggs (Plain Awful?) the
"square" people are speaking Nynorsk instead of Bokmal
(the two written forms of Norwegian), to make them sound
I think this is because DD&Co has a very high reputation
when it comes to the language (the ruputation is high in
other matters too). Parents can safely give the magazine
to their children, because they won't learn a bad language
from it. Hjemmet (the Norwegian Disney comics publisher)
won't risc this reputation, of course.
BTW: When "Plain Awful" was published for the first time in
Norway (in the 50's), one of the big "fights" about the
written languages took place at the same time. The minority
wanted Nynorsk to be more important, and some people on the
other side didn't want Nynorsk to be a language at all.
Then came these small, funny, square people speaking Nynorsk.
That made _big_ headlines. "Donald Duck choosing side in the
fight of the language."
Hjemmet just wanted the square people to sound different ;-)
When it was reprinted in the 70's they did not speak
"different". They didn't dare let them speak Nynorsk. They
also changed the last panel, but that's another story.
Then, when it was reprinted again, before Don's "Return to
Plain Awful", they used the original version. No angry head-
lines this time. But a lot of praising of both Barks' and Don's
Ducks in academia.
When Barks visited this university earlier this year the big
event started with three lectures (couldn't find a better word
at the moment, could be the right one for all I know...).
One of them was by Geir Hasnes (hidden meanings in Barks'
stories (that was _really_ good, Geir! :-) ).
Then Finn Erik Vinje held one about the language of DD&Co. He
had let some of his students make some statistics on frequencies
on certain word etc.
Then another professor (whose name I must admit that I have
forgotten) at UiO held one with the title "Why we recommend our
students to read Donald". :-)
And again, thanks to James for explaining how to make a Disney
story. I guess Don doesn't have to use too many words to explain
a panel to the artist :-)
Jorgen A. Bangor (jorgenb at ifi.uio.no)
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