Founded in 2017 and Paris-Lisbon based, Éditions Ismael is a publisher in the form of a non-profit association, which publishes books in French and other languages. The type of works published are mainly narrative, philosophical, and scientific. All can be freely downloaded at editions-ismael.com, even if also sold in print.
Parallel to its editorial activity, Éditions Ismael is developing an independent archival project which will be launched in 2023.

Ismael? The name of Abraham and Hagar’s son fulfills a very specific symbolic function. In the Book of Genesis, he is the embodiment of the tragic moment of rejection and outward promise. He is the patriarch of another line of descent: alongside the sons of Isaac—the people of Yahweh’s Covenant, the characters of the biblical narrative, and the only actors in History—, the nomadic progeny of Ismael dwells in the margins of the text, in the desert. The nobility and respect they are entitled to are not denied to them by their brothers,  but their deeds are never referred to, their names rarely mentioned, and their literal presence limited to brief moments in which they burst through from the edges into the historical world.

Like Isaac’s line of descent, Literature also excluded a multitude of actors and practices from its history. Through its catalogue, this editorial project aims to question the legitimacy of “Literature” as a modern concept regulating the entire field of writing (in its broadest sense). We challenge: 1) the originality and continuity of the successions in literary history; 2) the legitimacy of hegemonic literary discourses and practices; 3) the legitimacy of the market’s standardisation of Literature in form and content and its right to judge what can and cannot be published.

Limited resources, discretion, a non-profit approach, broad economic and functional independence, a serious communication, and a refusal to disregard quality are some of the basic tenets of our methodology.

Our catalogue is not so much a coherent whole as a series of actions. Each book is a unique project, the result of personal collaboration that redefines our methodology at every level and our understanding of editorial and literary practices.

Below are some of the main threads for the present and future:

1) To find, establish, question, and interpret texts that very often draw their meaning from historical circumstances and challenge our taste with their outward poetical poverty. These are mostly epistles, memoirs, court records, confessions, personal meditations, testimonies, diaries, reports, sermons, etc. Hermeneutics will therefore be of great importance, given that it will enable the genesis of these literary acts to be rethought and question how they redefine Literature and its history through their singular use of language and tradition. To sum up, the catalogue aims to develop a critical history of literature and to diversify its concept, giving credit and attention to its myriad practices. Moreover, in each publication, we intend to question the meaning of literature and writing in general.

2) To publish previously unseen, out-of-print or hardly and hard-to-access narrative, poetic, philosophical, and/or scientific works that are innovative in their respective field. The aim is to promote little-known works and to reinforce the presence and impact of texts, which, known to only a relatively small readership, are on the verge of completely vanishing from circulation.

Based on its association status and the benevolent work of its members, and limiting its costs principally to copyright and printer’s fees (small print runs, often in offset), Éditions Ismael aspires to thrive and develop while ensuring its authors are well remunerated and its publications are freely and widely available to readers all around the world. Depending on the country, we hire a distributor (cf. infra) to deliver our printed editions to bookstores or we distribute them ourselves. We always sell them at the lowest possible price (accounting for costs and royalties), and, in line with our status, all profit is reinvested in new titles.


→ To satisfy the most demanding of readers and to provide the public with credible and long-lasting books.
→ To publish texts written, edited, and/or translated by volunteers or freelance authors in exchange for a copyright fee relative to the number of print copies sold.
→ To publish high quality books both in terms of content and production.
To work with our authors to ensure the editorial contract reflects as far as possible their personal wishes and protects their rights.
→ To ensure readers the lowest possible price for each print edition and the fairest remuneration for all stakeholders.
→ To reinvest the profits on the sale of print editions into its activities and development, as a non-profit association.


All of the books in our catalogue fulfill at least one of the following criteria:

  • They are a reprint (within the parameters of our “Reprints” collection) of a (usually short) non-widely read text to increase its readership.
  • They are a new translation or a first translation.
  • They are the first edition of a previously unpublished text.
  • They are a new edition (with critical material, accurate notes, discussion of the interpretative method applied to the text, discussion of the interpretative tradition created around the text, etc., although this can vary from one edition to another). In this case, the focus is placed on:
    1. Books that are currently unavailable on the market.
    2. Books that are impossible (or very hard) to find on the market and in libraries’ free-access digital collections.
    3. Rare books or texts that are little-known and/or hard to find in libraries.


Pollen (Belgium, Canada, France, Switzerland).

Éditions Ismael (rest of the world).

A distributor for the rest of the world will soon be announced.


11 rue du Général Delestraint, 75016 Paris, France.


Manuscripts and requests can be sent by regular post or email.


Non-profit association.
Founded on March 1, 2017.
RNA number: W691092383.
SIREN number: 834 494 650 00015.
SIRET number: 834 494 650.
Head Office: 11 rue du Général Delestraint, 75016 Paris, France.



Design and creation: fimdomeio.
Photo capture and editing: Catarina Santos.
Translation and revision: Sébastien Jallaud, João Ayton, Chris Foster.