PRH CEO: ‘Publishing Is Undeniably a Force for Good’

Penguin Random HousePenguin and Random House merged three years ago, in 2013, and today Penguin Random House’s CEO, Markus Dohle, sent an anniversary letter to employees in which he congratulated them on their hard work, but more importantly, detailed how that work is affecting people throughout the world.

“Along this road, we have continued to write our story, telling the world who we are, what we do, and why we do it,” Dohle wrote. “Equally important is how—especially in today’s dynamic and complex world, with unprecedented societal events impacting all of us.”

“Publishing is undeniably a force for good,” Dohle continued. “But working in an industry that is inherently a service to society, we risk subscribing to the notion that this is enough. It’s not. We ought to do more—and we can—by taking advantage of our capacity as Penguin Random House to drive positive social, environmental, and cultural change, locally and globally.”

Since the merger, Dohle wrote, PRH has unveiled many social responsibility initiatives, including National Readathon Day, Give a Book, and Creative Writing Awards.

PRH also created a short video to go along with the announcement.

“We work to ensure the long-term future of books for the next generation readers,” the video states.

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One thought on “PRH CEO: ‘Publishing Is Undeniably a Force for Good’

  1. Michael W. Perry

    Is publishing “Undeniably a Force for Good’? Not at all. It depends on what is or is not being published.

    Has PRH ever published a book explaining why abortion was actually legalized. It wasn’t on the feminist to-do list as late as Betty Friedan’s 1963 The Feminine Mystique, which never mentions it. That should say something.

    And look at the late 1960s when the drive for abortion legalization shifted into high gear. Would any movement intent on reproductive choice launch a campaign warning of a world-shattering “population bomb”? That’s an argument for limiting who is permitted to have children. And note too that the population control movement was filled with rebranded eugenists. In fact in the late 1960s, the most visible champion of abortion legalization was Dr. Alan Guttmacher, president of Planned Parenthood-World Population and, not accidentally, the former VP of the American Eugenics Association.

    If you recall your history, a generation earlier eugenists has screamed out warnings about the threat posed by immigration from Southern and Eastern Europe. That’s the key point of Margaret Sanger’s 1922 bestseller, The Pivot of Civilization. Sanger was the founder of today’s Planned Parenthood.

    Now imagine how those eugenists, now cloaked as family planners, felt when the birth control pill sent birth rates plummeting in white suburbian while those rates remained high among the nation’s black poor. Yes, that explains why federally funded family planning in ghettos “to prevent the evil of abortion” was so quickly followed by abortiion legalization to get rid of those missed by federally funded birth control.

    And fast-forward to today, where the Obama administration wants to force devout Catholics and Evangelicals to pay for abortions. Why? Few issues are more widely supported among the very rich than legalized abortion for the poor. You’d think the rich would give generously to fund a Planned Parenthood abortion clinic close to black communities. Ah, but there’s a catch. Those who give would have their names registered as giving. They’d much rather their giving not be recorded, lest the real goal of abortion legalization come out. Indeed, Justice Blackmun gave that goal in the first paragraph of Roe v. Wade when he noted the “eugenic” and racial overtones” of that decision.

    Has PRH, in its alleged effort ” to drive positive social, environmental, and cultural change, locally and globally” ever published a book exposing those racist and eugenic connections to abortion legalizations? Somehow, I think not.

    As I said at the start, publishing is only a “force for good” if what is published is itself good. In that PRH seems to be coming up woefully lacking.



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