Situationist International anthology - Ken Knabb

E-book of the most comprehensive collection of writings in book form of the Situationist International in English, translated and compiled by Ken Knabb.

Submitted by Tyrion on October 21, 2013

NB: Many of the texts below are also included as standalone articles in Libcom's archive of the International Situationniste journal.

In 1957 a few European avant-garde groups came together to form the Situationist International. Picking up where the dadaists and surrealists had left off, the situationists challenged people's passive conditioning with carefully calculated scandals and the playful tactic of detournement. Seeking a more extreme social revolution than was dreamed of by most leftists, they developed an incisive critique of the global spectacle-commodity system and of its "Communist" pseudo-opposition, and their new methods of agitation helped trigger the May 1968 revolt in France. Since then--although the SI itself was dissolved in 1972, situationist theories and tactics have continued to inspire radical currents all over the world. The Situationist International Anthology, generally recognized as the most comprehensive and accurately translated collection of situationist writings in English, presents a rich variety of articles, leaflets, graffiti and internal documents, ranging from early experiments in "psychogeography" to lucid analyses of the Watts riot, the Vietnam War, the Prague Spring, the Chinese Cultural Revolution and other crises and upheavals of the sixties.

Preface by Ken Knabb


Formulary for a New Urbanism Ivan Chtcheglov (1953)
Introduction to a Critique of Urban Geography by Guy Debord (1955)
Proposals for Rationally Improving the City of Paris by Lettrist International (1955)
A User’s Guide to Détournement by Guy Debord and Gil J. Wolman (1956)
The Alba Platform by Lettrist International (1956)
Notes on the Formation of an Imaginist Bauhaus by Asger Jorn (1957)
Report on the Construction of Situations by Guy Debord (1957)


The Sound and the Fury
Preliminary Problems in Constructing a Situation
Theses on Cultural Revolution by Guy Debord
The Situationists and Automation by Asger Jorn
No Useless Leniency by Michèle Bernstein
Action in Belgium Against the International Assembly of Art Critics #2 (1958)
Theory of the Dérive by Guy Debord #3 (1959)
Détournement as Negation and Prelude
Situationist Theses on Traffic by Guy Debord
Another City for Another Life by Constant/Constant Nieuwenhuys #4 (1960)
The Use of Free Time
Gangland and Philosophy by Attila Kotányi #5 (1960)
The Adventure
The Fourth SI Conference in London #6 (1961)
Instructions for an Insurrection
Basic Program of the Bureau of Unitary Urbanism by Attila Kotányi and Raoul Vaneigem
Perspectives for Conscious Changes in Everyday Life by Guy Debord #7 (1962)
Geopolitics of Hibernation
The Bad Days Will End
The Fifth SI Conference in Göteborg
Basic Banalities (Part 1) by Raoul Vaneigem #8 (1963)
Ideologies, Classes, and the Domination of Nature
The Avant-Garde of Presence
The Counter-Situationist Campaign in Various Countries
All the King’s Men
Basic Banalities (Part 2) by Raoul Vaneigem
Anti-Public Relations Notice #9 (1964)
Now, the SI
Response to a Questionnaire from the Center for Socio-Experimental Art by J. V. Martin, Jan Strijbosch, Raoul Vaneigem and René Viénet #10 (1966)
Address to Revolutionaries of Algeria and of All Countries
The Decline and Fall of the Spectacle-Commodity Economy
The Class Struggles in Algeria
Contribution to a Councilist Program in Spain
Some Theoretical Topics That Need To Be Dealt With by Raoul Vaneigem
Captive Words: Preface to a Situationist Dictionary by Mustapha Khayati
The Role of Godard
The Ideology of Dialogue
Interview with an Imbecile
The Algeria of Daniel Guérin, Libertarian
Domenach versus Alienation #11 (1967)
The Explosion Point of Ideology in China
Two Local Wars
Our Goals and Methods in the Strasbourg Scandal
The Situationists and the New Forms of Action Against Politics and Art by René Viénet
Aiming for Practical Truth by Raoul Vaneigem
Setting Straight Some Popular Misconceptions About Revolutions in the Underdeveloped Countries by Mustapha Khayati
Minimum Definition of Revolutionary Organizations
Three Postscripts to the Previous Issue #12 (1969)
The Beginning of an Era
Reform and Counterreform in the Bureaucratic Bloc
How Not To Understand Situationist Books
Preliminaries on Councils and Councilist Organization by René Riesel
Notice to the Civilized Concerning Generalized Self-Management by Raoul Vaneigem
The Conquest of Space in the Time of Power by Eduardo Rothe
The Latest Exclusions
The Elite and the Backward
Cinema and Revolution
The Organization Question for the SI by Guy Debord


Preliminaries Toward Defining a Unitary Revolutionary Program by Pierre Canjuers and Guy Debord (1960)
For a Revolutionary Judgment of Art by Guy Debord (1961)
Theses on the Paris Commune by Guy Debord, Attila Kotányi, Raoul Vaneigem (1962)
The Situationists and the New Forms of Action in Politics and Art by Guy Debord (1963)
On the Poverty of Student Life (1966)
In Short (1965 & 1969)


Watch Out for Manipulators! Watch Out for Bureaucrats!
Slogans To Be Spread Now by Every Means
Report on the Occupation of the Sorbonne
For the Power of the Workers Councils
Address to All Workers


Provisional Statutes of the SI (1969)
Provisional Theses for the Discussion of New Theoretico-Practical Orientations in the SI by Paolo Salvadori (1970)
Remarks on the SI Today by Guy Debord (1970)
Declaration by Guy Debord, René Riesel and René Viénet (1970)
Untitled Text by Guy Debord (1971)