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After Midnight

The English trade publishing scene

In: Logos
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Thomas Abraham
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Abstract

A whirlwind historical tour of the trade publishing (in English) landscape in India from the start of printing down to the present day, 75 years after Independence. The piece attempts to be a capsule history surveying the evolution of the trade book market through the multiple perspectives of authors, booksellers, genres, publishers, and market data. This is intended primarily as a quick introduction to the beginner and practitioner alike and is not intended to be an exhaustive narrative either by chronology or by genre or market information. It is a quick one-stop reference point for those who would like to see when and how the foundations for trade publishing were late, the key historical imperatives, early writing movements, the earliest booksellers, the beginnings of a formalized and sustained market through imports and distribution, and looks at the evolution of local Indian English publishing and how that has matured into a significant industry; and concludes by taking stock of current market realities and assays forward initiatives needed to reach the next level of stable development.

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