Although publishers Athenaeum—Polak & Van Gennep already had several series of classics to their name, in 2007 another was added in the shape of the new Perpetua series: the best of world literature, sometimes newly translated and always accompanied by an afterword. Given all the argument about the literary canon there was nothing strange about this – though once again the choice of titles gave rise to debate.
There was of course no need for the judges to ponder the question of what constitutes a literary classic, but, being keen to include a specimen in the selection, they did consider the design of such works. They chose the Perpetua edition of Crime and Punishment, a hardback volume with a ribbon bookmark and dust jacket. Although they found the hinge slightly weak, they appreciated the initiative and thought this Crime and Punishment very fine compared with the rest of the classically inclined novels submitted.
They particularly liked the dust jacket by Anneke Germers, already the winner of several awards for her work. This was felt to be outstanding in its subtlety and beautifully chosen colours. From its inception Germers has been defining the face of the series by varying the colour of the jacket and the dotted lines with which, for each volume, she creates a new framework for the title, author’s name etc. The addition of a second colour, in this case apple green alongside a deep bluish grey, was described as tasteful.