Wednesday, 6 June 2012

Marx and Engels Climb the Best-Sellers List in Spain

Radical political writing is providing some European publishers with surprise successes amid the debt crisis.

In Madrid, one book that has sprung back from nowhere this week is Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels’ Communist Manifesto, which first came out in 1848. Several new editions have appeared in Europe — including one in Spanish complete with illustrations that has been an unexpected success for Nordica Libros at the Madrid Book Fair, according to El Pais.

This is a step on from Stephane Hessel’s “Indignez-Vous!” — entitled “Time for Outrage!” in the English edition — that two years ago seemed to catch a wave of discontent, initially in France, where it sold 950,000 copies in ten weeks. The 30-page booklet has since sold more than four million copies and has been translated into more than 30 languages. This week it still sits on the tables of best-sellers in many bookshops, including Filigranes, one of the major book stores near Brussels’ European quarter and the European Commission.

Hessel, a former French resistance fighter and diplomat who worked for the United Nations when the Universal Declaration of Human Rights was drawn up, takes issue with the divide between rich and poor and the power of finance in determining political choice.

This doesn’t mean the most radical parties in any European country are suddenly going to see queues at the door, but it does suggest a thirst for new, and old, ideas about how to overcome the crisis.

Reblogged via: Bloomberg

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