22 September 2020

Hundreds of classical texts are now available online

An important part of the long list of books that make up the publishing heritage of the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, including fundamental works for the Portuguese culture, for the academic world and the public, are available online.

Fifty-two works of the Collection of Classical Texts are now accessible to the public and other Collections – Portuguese Culture and Academic Textbooks – are currently in process of selection and digital editing for future online editions.  Other than publishing works from these collections, which will be made available gradually until the end of next year, the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation will also give preference to free and universally accessible digital publishing of other contents such as essays, conference minutes, reports and other texts concerning programmes and projects. Some of the most relevant works published by the Paris Branch of the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation will also be available online.

This decision is the result of a new policy with guidelines which aim to assure universal access to classical works of world culture and relevant works of Portuguese culture. From now on, the publishing of new works and new editions of previously published works will be made available in digital format assuring free and universal access whenever copyright laws allow it.

Isabel Mota, the president of the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, emphasizes that this new guideline “stems from a commitment with society that follows an old principle: making reading accessible to all. This is what it was all about with the Itinerary Libraries, the emblematic vans that crossed the country so that books could get everywhere for free, and this is what is going to happen with these new editions, published by the Foundation with accessible prices”.

Following this guideline, the Publishing Plan of the Foundation will focus on fundamental texts of the Portuguese culture, which aren’t viable choices for the market due to the costs involved, and also on the translation and publishing of fundamental classical texts. The publishing of complete works and anthologies already in preparation will also be continued. This is the case of the works of authors such as Pedro Nunes, Fernão Oliveira, Eduardo Lourenço, Borges de Macedo, Miriam Halpern Pereira and Luís Filipe Tomás. These works will continue to be printed, just like the Art Catalogues and the magazine Colóquio-Letras.

The titles from the Collection of Classical Texts already available are:  The RepublicTheaetetus and The Sophist by Plato, Letters from a Stoic by Seneca, History of the Peloponnesian War by Thucydides, Medea by Euripedes, On Learned Ignorance by Nicholas of Cusa, Critique of Pure Reason and Metaphysics of Morals by Immanuel Kant, About infinity, universe and worlds by Giordano Bruno, The Virtuous City by Al-farabi, Utopia by Thomas More, The City of God by Saint Augustine, On the art of building by Leon Battista Alberti, Sideral Messenger by Galileo Galilei, Poetics: theorical texts by Edgar Allan Poe, Introduction to Mathematical Philosophy by Bertrand Russell or Principles of Economic Policy by Walter Eucken.


Find out more (in Portuguese)