EDITION – This will be made to order only. Publisher Fayard announced on Monday, May 17, the publication on June 2 of his critical edition of “Mein Kampf”, exposition of the racist and anti-Semitic ideology of Adolf Hitler, and the donation of the profits to the Auschwitz-Birkenau Foundation.
This is the culmination of a ten-year project for this publishing house, which has decided to call the book “Historiciser le mal, a critical edition by Mein Kampf”.
The distribution will be done in ways rarely seen, namely only to retailers who take the initiative to order it, Fayard said in a letter to booksellers sent on Monday, and obtained by AFP.
“To market this work, we have chosen not to proceed with a release to the office (editor’s note: distribution at the initiative of the publisher via the book distribution networks) as is customary, but to offer ‘Historiciser le mal’ to order from you, dear booksellers ”, explains in this letter the CEO, Sophie de Closets. The very high price, 100 euros, should limit the number of readers.
Written by Hitler between 1924 and 1925, when the leader of the Nazi Party (NSDAP) was serving a prison sentence after the failure of a putsch, “Mein Kampf” is a long manifesto by a politician who, from marginal, will rise to power by the ballot box in 1933, before engaging his country in a world war and an enterprise of genocide of the Jews of Europe.
Adolf Hitler looks back on his journey and exposes his vision by hurling violent imprecations against those he designates as the enemies of Germany, starting with the Jews.
Fayard entrusted this reputedly difficult text to a renowned translator, Olivier Mannoni, who worked on authors such as Sigmund Freud, Stefan Zweig or Franz Kafka. The volume will reach 1,000 pages, of which one-third for the original text, and two-thirds for the critical device.
“Our committee of historians, headed by Florent Brayard, translated, adapted, extended the 3,000 notes of the German edition and wrote a general introduction and 27 chapter introductions”, detailed Fayard.
The first French edition of “Mein Kampf”, under the title “Mon combat”, approaching 700 pages, dates back to 1934, to the Nouvelles Editions latines, which still market it.
In addition to this edition, published “by what Sophie de Closets describes as” a house of the extreme right (which sold nearly 5,000 copies last year alone) “, the editor notes that it is” very easy “to find it “in one click” on the internet.
Fayard himself had published in 1938 an edition approved by the Nazi regime, under the title “My doctrine”, and twice shorter, redacted among other things from the many anti-French passages.
This time, “there is no question, of course, that this publication could be lucrative: thus, the Auschwitz-Birkenau Foundation, in charge of the conservation of the site of the concentration and extermination camp, will collect royalties. first copy sold and all of the profits that could come from the sale, ”says the publishing house.
In a letter to the Minister of Culture Roselyne Bachelot, of which she sent a copy to AFP, Eliane Calmann-Levy, a descendant of the founders of the editions of the same name, called on the government to ensure “accounting transparency ”By an“ access to the detailed accounts of Fayard ”.
A critical German edition of “Mein Kampf”, in two volumes of nearly 2000 pages, was published by a historical research center in Munich, the IfZ, in January 2016, when the work was published. the public domain.
In January 2021, the Bellona editions in Warsaw published a critical edition in Polish, of 1000 pages.
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