Abstract detail

Title Publishers, Writers and Business: The History of Hestia Publishers & Booksellers (1885-2006)

Hestia Publishers & Booksellers is the oldest Greek publishing house in operation since 1885 without interruption. Nowadays it is a medium-size enterprise keeping a high cultural prestige due to its longevity and the quality of its choices. This paper shall cover the evolution of the enterprise focusing on Greek book history, which is a field almost completely unexplored especially concerning the last two centuries. It will examine Hestia’s cultural impact as well as the economic history of book business during an extended period of time and under various constraints, both market and political ones. Hestia has always been a family-based publishing house, open-minded and liberal. It started its activities mainly as a textbook publisher, which gave it a solid financial basis, until 1937, when this sector was taken over by the State. It then turned to literature creating an innovative new pocket-size hard-back series where it attracted the major writers of the “generation of the ’30s”, like Venezis, Myrivilis, Karagatsis, Theotokas, Terzakis etc. The house was then identified with the Academy of Athens and considered as a conservative publisher. In the 21st centure its production is evenly divided between Greek and translated books while scholarly works have gained a substantial share in its catalogue.

Primary author
Anna Karakatsouli