Little Smarty Travels to the Future

MCLC Resource Center is pleased to announce publication of Little Smarty Travels to the Future (小灵通漫游未来), by Ye Yonglie 叶永烈 and translated by Lena Henningsen et al. Little Smarty is a 1980 comic book (连环画) based on a 1978 novel, also by Ye Yonglie. The translation includes all 150 panels from the comic book and English translations of each caption. Find below the first few panels of the translation. To read the whole text, go to: We will be publishing Lena Henningsen’s introduction to the text in the next few days. Enjoy.

Kirk Denton, editor

Little Smarty Travels to the Future

By Ye Yonglie 叶永烈, Pan Caiying 潘彩英 (adaptation),
Du Jianguo 杜建国 and Mao Yongkun 毛用坤 (illustrations)[1]

Tr. by Adrian Ewald, Lena Henningsen, Lars Konheiser, Elena Mannich,
Federica Monchiero, Franziska Roth, Joschua Seiler, and Sen Wei (Freiburg University)

MCLC Resource Center Publication (Copyright September 2020)

Introduction: This is a science fiction comic book (科学幻想连环画). Through a reporter’s–Little Smarty’s–travel to Future City, [this comic book] vividly unfolds before [our] eyes future high developments in science and technology and the splendid prospect of limitless magnificence in people’s lives. It also tells its young readers: Only if [we] painstakingly study and only if [we] are bold in climbing scientific heights during the advance of the Four Modernizations, can [we] build our motherland to become as thriving and prosperous as Future City.

Dear kids: Do you want to know how the future world will look like? I am a reporter, called Little Smarty. Recently I went to Future City to gather news. It is extremely fascinating there! Let me tell you what that place is like.

Where should I start? I will start from my “treasure,” my camera, and how I lost it! I remember that day at dusk; I was roaming on the riverbank, wanting to photograph the “Riverbank Evening Scene.”

I grabbed into my bag, but–darn it! The “treasure,” my camera, was gone. I searched my bag again and pulled out a water bottle, a small knife, a pen, and lots of other things. I pulled everything out, but I still couldn’t find the camera. I was extremely worried. A moment later, the curtain of night fell…. [click here to read the whole text]

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