Penguin Group (USA) and Egyptian publisher Dar El Shorouk have partnered to bring Penguin Classics to the Arabic world.
Some of the planned titles include Robert Louis Stevenson’s The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, Miguel de Cervantes’ Don Quixote, and Jonathan Swift’s Gulliver’s Travels.
The Wall Street Journal interviewed Dar El Shorouk chairman Ibrahim El Moallem. Here’s an excerpt about censorship in the Arab world: “Mr. El Moallem said that presenting the Penguin library as a series of the world’s greatest books may help trump the censorship issue. In addition, while the books will be launched as printed physical copies, planned digital editions will prove difficult to repress.”
The two companies will divided the profits from the series. Arab readers should expect to see these books available in stores by 2011.
Full Disclosure: This GalleyCat contributor has worked as an intern at Penguin Group (USA) in the past.