Among books and gods
Publishers focused on book about African-matrix religions seek a place on the shelves and hearts of readers
Leonardo Neto, journalist at PublishNews, wrote a beautiful article about book publishers focused on the afroreligious audience, with highlight to Arole Cultural. Take a look...
Until recently, the most attentive reader could enumerate, using the fingers of one hand, those publishers who were dedicated to publishing books on the religions of African-Brazilian traditions. Madras and Pallas are the best known and longest on the road, but that number has grown. Recently, two new publishing houses arrived - each one with its specifics - to occupy a place at the sun. Arole Cultural, founfed two years ago, is one of them. The company, directed by Babalosha Diego de Oxóssi and focused on Candomblé, has12 published books (and forecasts other 20 until next December); 15 thousand books sold and more than 3.000 active and recurrent clients on its own e-commerce (click here to know our books).
Another, going on the parallel path and focusing on the followers of Umbanda readers, is Aruanda, by Aline Martins, who prepares its first book: "Spiritism, magic and the seven lines of umbanda", by Leal de Souza, pre-sold on the site of the publisher with forecast of delivery from the next day 20.
The two editors have in common the fact of being followers of their respective religions and of perceiving gaps in this segment..
“I felt there was a gap... For sure there were books about candomblé. However, in general, they were written by scholars and outsiders, with few priests or priestesses talking about Candomblé. I felt a need to hear the voices from inside the temples and amplify them out of these spaces and out of Brazil”, said Diego, who has invested heavily in the internationalization of his catalog, with participation in the last fairs of London and Buenos Aires for that purpose.
In the other hand, Aruanda was born from the classes that her foundress received during the MBA in Book Publishing, of LabPub, and the postgraduate degree in Editing and Editorial Management, from Nespe. This academic base made the publisher research a lot. Based on IBGE data, she observed that the followers of the Umbanda form the second religious group with greater purchasing power and the second in superior formation (losing, in both cases, only for those who declare themselves to be spiritists). Despite these characteristics, there was no publisher specifically targeted to this audience.
“I thought of Aruanda, first, because I'm a Umbandist, and second, because the Umbanda books were very mixed with other themes. There are publishers who are going on African themes, but Umbanda, however, as much as it brings this themes, is very mixed: it brings with it questions of Catholicism, the legacies of the Natives, issues of the East, spiritualism, etc.”, says Aline. Aruanda provides in its catalog fiction books (mediumistic novels, psychographies, reports or with Umbandist background), nonfiction (philosophy, essays, doctrines and foundations), as well as children and juveniles.
The main distribution channel of the two publishers is their own e-commerce. “Our website is still strong, but other channels are growing. We already have a good distribution for Rio, São Paulo and Porto Alegre and we are advancing through the Northeast [with the support of Catavento] and excellent placement in Amazon [to whom Arole Cultural does firm selling]”, says Diego. A curiosity is that the pre-sales of the first book of Aruanda also proved strong in the states cited by Diego. Aline has an explanation for your case: according to their survey, are in these units of the federation the largest contingent umbandistas of the country. It is in the planning of Aruanda to offer their books also via marketplaces, specifically Submarino and Amazon.
The link to the original article is https://www.publishnews.com.br/materias/2019/06/05/entre-orixas-e-livros