Morris Philipson, Who Led the University of Chicago Press, Dies at 85
By PAUL VITELLO
New York Times
Published: November 10, 2011
Morris Philipson, who was a novelist as well as a publisher.
William Mahin/University of Chicago Press
Morris Philipson, who steered the University of Chicago Press as it became the largest and one of the nation’s most important publishers of monumental scholarly works, modern fiction and postwar European philosophy, died on Nov. 3 in Chicago. He was 85.
In the 1980 Times interview, Mr. Philipson described university publishing as nothing less than civilization’s keeper of the flame, the only outlet for the dense scholarship and grandest, often unwieldy works of the world’s intellectual giants. “The commercial publisher says of his book, ‘This is no good, but it’ll make a lot of money,’ ” he said. “The university publisher says, ‘This is good and it won’t make money.’ ”
He added, “Suppose an important book sells only 100 or 200 copies a year? Doesn’t it deserve to live? We think so.”