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Eloisa Cartonera - alternativer Verlag in Buenos Aires
Eloisa Cartonera - alternative publisher in Buenos Aires
|Sitz|| Aristóbulo del Valle 666, República de La Boca|
“Eloisa Cartonera“ is an alternative publisher in Buenos Aires that produces books using an old printing machine, a photocopier, glue and cardboard boxes.
Since an economic crisis in 2001, Argentina has experienced hard times. Book prizes have risen – many Argentinians cannot afford to buy books, many of which cost 70 pesos and more.
The publishing house, founded in 2003 in the aftermath of the economic crisis, is a cooperative enterprise. “Eloisa Cartonera“ produces ca. 5,000 books per year, thus providing people with books they can afford. At the same time, the cooperative creates employment opportunities thus contributing to the country’s future. Since2007, the publishers have been residing in a former pizza restaurant in La Boca, a deprived quarter of the capital, Buenos Aires.
The so-called cartoneros are people collecting waste paper in Buenos Aires: they assist the publishers in their daily search for suitable cardboard boxes. The publishers pay the cartoneros ten times as much as they would receive from local wastepaper dealers for their targeted search for the right “book material”.
Different Latin American authors have conscientiously decided to publish with “Eloisa Cartonera“, constituting a regular pool. Besides children’s books, the publishers print poetry, novels and plays. An old printing machine is used to print the intellectual property. The cardboard is used as a cover, which is manually cut, folded and individually illustrated – thus, each copy becomes unique, as well as being affordable. A complete book produced by ”Eloisa Cartonera“ is sold for 5 pesos. “More people are hence able to buy books”, says Alberto Sarlo, one of the authors publishing with “Eloisa Cartonera“. And: “Reading is good for everybody.“