Children's classics translated from English under Franco : the censorship of the William books and the Adventures of Tom Sawyer
The thesis documents the censorship histories of Mark Twain's The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and Richmal Crompton's William books under Franco, and analyses these censorship histories in terms of the changing character of the regime. Previously unconsulted primary sources are used, such as censors' reports and translation proofs held in the Archivo General de la Administración del Estado at Alcalá de Henares. The censors' reports demonstrate that children's literature and translated literature were treated as special cases by the regime, and that censorship was particularly harsh in both areas. These findings demonstrate the crucial importance of attitudes to childhood and foreignness in the Francoist ideological scheme. The censorship histories of Tom Sawyer and the William books reveal some surprising facts. The William books began to be persecuted by the censors in late 1942, precisely the moment when the regime was seeking a rapprochement with the Allied powers as the course of the War turned in the latter's favour. This prohibition cannot be understood without exploring the factors which differentiate children's literature from adult literature in the context of Francoism. The books' peculiarly English character also had a vital bearing on how they were censored. The history of Tom Sawyer in Spain demonstrates the effect of literary status on censorship practice. Early in the regime, the censors generally considered Tom Sawyer to be a work for adults. From the mid-1950s, however, children's literature was inscribed as a special category in censorship legislation, and the censors began to view editions of the work as specifically intended for children. Tom Sawyer thus encountered censorship problems in the later years of the regime, supposedly more liberal than the earlier period. Again, these problems would be inexplicable without examining the evolution of the publishing industry and Francoist attitudes to literature and the child. The thesis also provides a detailed analysis of the type of suppressions imposed on the books studied, under the following headings: religion; love, sexuality and gender; authority and politics, nation and race; crime, terror and violence.