Atlanta-Martin Luther King Jr.’s property has reached a contract to give HarperCollins the right to publish his books and speeches to reach a new generation of readers and emphasize the relevance of today’s civil rights leaders. did.
King Estate announced on Tuesday that it had reached an international agreement with the same publisher that had given King a chance for over 60 years when he published his first book, Stride Toward Freedom.
King’s book will be republished and works will be released based on his life and writing.
The first title will be published in the United States as early as January to coincide with Martin Luther King Junior Day.
“Dr. King’s prophetic message of peace, hope, love and equality continues to influence the world today,” said King Estate Manager Eric Tidwell. “That message is needed more than ever. We look forward to leveraging HarperCollins’ global footprint and continuing to perpetuate Dr. King’s wonderful heritage through new creative literary projects. I will. “
The financial details of the deal have not been disclosed, but it does include the worldwide right to publish from the King Archive in all formats, including children’s books, ebooks, audiobooks, journals and graphic novels in all languages. I will.
As part of the deal, HarperCollins will work with prominent black scholars, actors, artists, performers and social activists to help bring King’s work to a new audience. This includes the annual reissue of King’s “I Have a Dream” speech in Washington, March 1963, with new introductions each year from contemporary writers.
Judith Kerr, President and Publisher of Harper One, said: group. “We see this as an opportunity to further solidify Dr. King’s legacy as one of the world’s most indispensable figures in the battle for justice and equality.”
In 2018, Kerr directed the publication of Zora Neale Hurston’s posthumous non-fiction film Barracoon: The Story of the Last “Black Cargo”.
The book on the last survivors of the Atlantic slave trade is the New York Times bestseller and has won several awards of the year. Kerr then performed a collection of eight “lost” Harlem stories set in Harlem, “Striking a Straight Lick with a Bent Stick.”
“Our goal was to make Zora Neale Hurston a name familiar to young readers,” said Kerr. “And so far, it doesn’t seem to be as relevant to this moment as Martin Luther King’s words.”
The contract with HarperCollins ends the King Estate agreement with Beacon Press, which published an updated version of King’s speech and sermon.
Real estate literary agent Amy Berkower said sales at Beacon Hill were “disappointing in recent years.”
“I felt that books needed to be packaged in a more modern way,” she said.
The relationship between HarperCollins and King dates back to 1958 when the company published its groundbreaking Steps to Freedom: The Montgomery Story. King made him nationally famous when he spoke of the Montgomery Bus Boycott.
Now, the publisher is “excited about the prospect of expanding his reach in new ways,” said Brian Murray, president of HarperCollins.
Story submitted by Cox newspaper
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