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Colonialism for Kids: The Racist Origins of Babar the Elephant

The earliest memory I have is of my father teaching me to draw an elephant out of black ink on thick honey-washed watercolor paper.

Later, as an adult, I learned that he only knew how to draw this one animal, and I only kept drawing it because I thought it was his favorite. I suspect he was short on ideas for how else to bond, so he kept up with the elephant theme and brought home from the library “Babar the Elephant”. I have so much childhood nostalgia of sitting, reading, and writing with my dad, but I fucking hated Babar from the moment we opened it, and that was the end of elephant stuff.