Immigrant Publishers: The Impact of Expatriate Publishers in Britain and America in the 20th Century
Richard Abel, William Gordon Graham
Transaction Publishers, Jan 1, 2009 - Language Arts & Disciplines - 216 pages
In the first third of the twentieth century, the publishing industry in the United Kingdom and the United States was marked by well-established and comfortable traditions pursued by family-dominated firms. The British trade was the preserve of self-satisfied men entirely certain of their superiority in the world of letters; their counterparts in North America were blissfully unaware of development and trends outside their borders. In this unique historical analysis, Richard Abel and Gordon Graham show how publishing evolved post-World War II to embrace a different, more culturally inclusive, vision.
Unfortunately, even among the learned classes, only a handful clearly understood either the nature or the likely consequences of the mounting geopolitical tensions that gripped pre-war Europe. The world was largely caught up in the ill-informed and unexamined but widely held smug and shallow belief that the huge price paid in "the war to end all wars" had purchased perpetual peace, a peace to be maintained by the numerous, post-war high-minded treaties ceremoniously signed thereafter.
The history presented here has as its principals a handful of those who fled to the Anglo-Saxon shores in the pre-World War II era. The remainder made their way to Britain and the United States following that war. They brought an entirely new vision of and energetic pursuit of the cultural role of the book and journal in a society, a vision which was quickly adopted and naturalized by a perspicacious band of post-war native-born book people.
Richard Abel is secretary of the LOGOS foundation and long-standing member of its editorial board. He founded and started numerous publishing house including Timber Press, Amadeus Press, and what is now Blackwell North America. He has had well over forty years experience in the publishing industry.
Gordon Graham is founder and editor emeritus of LOGOS. He was previously chairman and chief executive of Butterworths. He has written extensively on the publishing industry, and is a doyen of publishing history and practice in the United Kingdom.