W. W. Norton & Company

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W. W. Norton & Company
Status Active
Founded 1923; 95 years ago (1923)
Founder William Warder Norton
Country of origin United States
Headquarters location 500 Fifth Avenue, New York City, New York
Key people W. Drake McFeely President
Publication types Books
Imprints Countryman, Liveright
No. of employees 450
Official website wwnorton.com

W. W. Norton & Company is an American publishing company based in New York City. It has been owned wholly by its employees since the early 1960s. The company is known for its "Norton Anthologies" (particularly The Norton Anthology of English Literature) and its texts in the Norton Critical Editions series, the latter of which are frequently assigned in university literature courses.


The roots of the company date back to 1923, when William Warder Norton founded the firm with his wife Mary Norton, and became its first president.[1] In the 1960's, Mary Norton offered most of her stock to its leading editors and managers. The Joint Stockholders Agreement that was subsequently signed gave the ownership of the firm to its active employees; that agreement remains in force to this day, the number of shareholders greatly expanded to include nearly all current Norton employees. [2]Storer D. Lunt took over in 1945 after Norton's death, and was succeeded by George Brockway (1957–1976), Donald S. Lamm (1976–1994), W. Drake McFeely (1994–2017)[3], and now Julia A. Reidhead (2017-present). Reidhead was vice president and publishing director of Norton’s College division and a former editor of the Norton Anthologies. [4]


W. W. Norton & Company is an employee-owned publisher in the United States,[5] which publishes fiction, nonfiction, poetry, college textbooks, cookbooks, art books, and professional books.[6]


Norton Anthologies[edit]

Norton Anthologies collect canonical works from various literatures; perhaps the best known anthology in the series is the Norton Anthology of English Literature, now in its 9th edition. Norton Anthologies offer general headnotes on each author, a general introduction to each period of literature, and annotations for every anthologised text.

Norton Critical Editions[edit]

Like Penguin Classics, Norton Critical Editions provide reprints of classic literature (and in some cases, classic non-fiction works, such as the writings of Darwin). However, unlike most critical editions, all Norton Critical Editions provide a selection of contextual documents, and critical essays along with an edited text. Annotations to the text are provided as footnotes, rather than endnotes as well.

Notable authors[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Norton History". W. W. Norton & Company, Inc. Retrieved 20 March 2013. 
  2. ^ http://books.wwnorton.com/books/aboutcontent.aspx?id=4386
  3. ^ "Gale Directory of Company Histories: W. W. Norton & Company, Inc." Retrieved 20 March 2013. 
  4. ^ http://books.wwnorton.com/books/news.aspx?id=4294994254
  5. ^ "Norton History". W. W. Norton & Company, Inc. Retrieved 20 March 2013. 
  6. ^ "Stock Page for W. W. Norton & Company". BusinessWeek.com. 

External links[edit]