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Jul 26, 2010

Publisher David R. Godine

Publisher and book collector David R. Godine is the founder and president of a small, independent, eponymous publishing house, located in Boston, Massachusetts. It produces between twenty and thirty titles per year and maintains an active reprint program.

Bio: After receiving degrees from Roxbury Latin School, Dartmouth College, and Harvard University, Godine worked for Leonard Baskin, the renowned typographer and printmaker, and master printer Harold McGrath. Going solo in 1970, from the confines of a deserted barn, using his own presses, Godine printed his first books. Most were letterpress, limited editions, printed on high-quality paper. In 1980, the company initiated its children’s program. A number of these books have become classics. The company has also published two important series: Imago Mundi, a line of original books devoted to photography and the graphic arts; and Verba Mundi, featuring the most notable contemporary world literature in translation. In 2002, Godine bought most of Black Sparrow Books’s backlist.

2010 marks the fortieth anniversary of Godine’s multiple award-winning publishing enterprise. We met recently in his office to talk about those books he’s most proud of having published, about the books he is, as a collector, most proud to own, and about how best one might go about collecting the Godine imprint. Please listen here:

This interview is part of our  Book Publisher Series which focuses on the histories of important British, American and Canadian publishing houses, and how to go about collecting their works.