• Zachary Petit

Penguin’s Great Ideas Series Delivers Another Dose of Divine Cover Design

Today is the anniversary of the Gettysburg Address, which had us reaching for our copy from Penguin’s Great Ideas series (which has long featured striking typographic covers by David Pearson).

One rabbit hole led to another, and we soon realized that after a decade-long hiatus, Penguin has launched a sixth edition of the series.

The books originally emerged 25 years ago as a way to feature short-form works by “great thinkers, pioneers, radicals and visionaries whose ideas have shaken civilization and helped shape the world.”

That manifested in pieces by Marcus Aurelius, Chinua Achebe, Thomas Paine, Mary Wollstonecraft, Charles Darwin, Virginia Woolf, Sun Tzu, Karl Marx, and many more—to the tune of 100 books.

Series six features 20 more volumes, this time by the likes of Aristotle, Sojourner Truth, Friedrich Nietzsche and Martin Luther King Jr.

True to the series’ form, the covers are divine. Under the art direction of Jim Stoddart, Pearson returned to design, alongside work by Alistair Hall, Joe McLaren, Phil Baines, Felix Koeberlin, and Catherine Dixon.

Here’s a look at the latest editions. Order your favorites at Penguin UK. And for an interview PRINT did with Pearson in 2009, click here.