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Information About Suntrust Bank v. Houghton Mifflin Company

May 7, 2001

Contact: Patti Embry-Tautenhan
BSMG Worldwide

Houghton Mifflin files appeal brief arguing
The Wind Done Gone is fair use of GWTW

BOSTON - Houghton Mifflin filed its appeal brief in the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals in Atlanta today, arguing that the Court should reverse an earlier District Court injunction preventing the publication of The Wind Done Gone.

In addition to asking for a reversal, the brief also argued that the Court should make it clear that The Wind Done Gone is "classic fair use of GWTW."

Houghton Mifflin's brief states: "This country stands for many good things. Among them is that authors and publishers are not silenced before their voices are heard. In The Wind Done Gone author Alice Randall asks to speak to the world of Gone with the Wind: through parody and transformative criticism of the book itself, and also through satire of the 'historic myths' that the book created and sustains. The conversation must be allowed to occur. The proposition that such a serious dialogue could, in this country, be subjected to a prior restraint is simply not an American proposition. It would invert Constitutional principles even more than The Wind Done Gone inverts Gone with the Wind."

In March, attorneys for the Mitchell Trusts filed a lawsuit in Atlanta to stop the publication of The Wind Done Gone, claiming it violates their copyright of Gone with the Wind. On April 20, a federal judge granted the Mitchell Trusts a preliminary injunction. Houghton Mifflin's emergency motion for an expedited appeal was granted, and the 11th Circuit Court will hear arguments on May 25th.

Houghton Mifflin is a leading publisher of textbooks, instructional technology, assessments and other educational materials for elementary and secondary schools and colleges. The Company also publishes an extensive line of reference works and fiction and nonfiction for adults and young readers. The Company's Internet site can be found at www.hmco.com.

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Suntrust Bank v. Houghton Mifflin Company Court Papers

Houghton Mifflin Company's Press Statements

Questions and Answers about this dispute
Letter of Support
List of Authors
Biography of Alice Randall

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