from Guy Debord

To Gallizio and Melanotte
16 June [1958]
Pinot e Giors, grandi e nobili amici[1]:

Thank you for the letter from Giors, received this morning.

It is not necessary to be too distressed about the current outcome of the French crisis: we still aren't defeated. What is totally defeated is bourgeois parlementarism. De Gaulle['s reign] can only be a short stage. The rapid choice is between fascism and a popular government. Attached is our analysis, made on 8 June [1958][2] -- subsequently confirmed (but the greatest probability is on the fascist side). This will be published in the [situationists'] journal, which you will receive soon: the distribution begins tomorrow.

What you tell me of Ralph [Rumney] confirms what we have thought: the poor guy is finished.

What Giors wrote me concerning [Luciano] Pistoi renders even more urgent the response to the questions that I posed in a letter sent yesterday to Pinot. If Pistoi prefers [Michel] Tapie to us, he must watch out: we will treat him in the future as we have treated Tapie.

Today the French press announced the scandal made in Milan by Nunzio Guglielmi.[3] You must know more about this affair than we do. It is possible that Guglielmi truly is an idiot. But, a priori, I do not believe it. You remember the Easter 1950 scandal at Notre Dame.[4] At that moment, one also tried to lock up our friends (thought to be crazy) for the rest of their lives. The only thing that prevented the police and the Church from succeeding in this was the protest of artists and intellectuals. It seems to me that Guglielmi's action has interest to us and that we have the duty to defend it. It is completely along our lines, that is, the attack against art-in-the-museums (cf. the ideas of [Asger] Jorn on this subject). Don't you think as I do about this subject?

(Without engaging ourselves in what this guy really is, but only on a question of principle.)

Can you immediately produce a short tract, sent to the newspapers and artists (even including Fontana[5] and [Enrico] Baj)? Can you make the verso in French and send me a hundred copies?

This would be good, between the expositions of industrial painting and at the moment when the first issue of our journal appears. Also good for Drouin!

I attach a sketch of the text.

Quickly send me the press clippings that I asked for yesterday.

Amicably towards Donna Augusta and you,

[1] Translator: Pinot and Giors, great and noble friends.

[2] "A Civil War in France," cf. I.S. #1, p. 32.

[3] Nunzio Van Guglielmi, Italian painter who was arbitrarily interned after having lightly damaged a painting by Raphael. [Translator: see the tract that Debord and Gallizio published on 4 July 1958: Defend Freedom Everywhere.]

[4] On 9 April 1950, in the course of the Great Mass celebrated by the Archbishop of Paris, a false dominican, Michel Mourre, read an address drafted by Serge Berna that ended with the words: "Today, Easter Sunday in the Sainted Year, here, in the notorious basilica of Notre Dame of France, we proclaim the death of the Christ-God so that Man may finally live." Chased by a pack of faithful worshippers who threatened to lynch them, Michel Mourre, Serge Berna and Ghislain de Marbaix were arrested.

[5] Lucio Fontana, a painter and sculptor, instigator of the first manifesto of Italian abstract art (Milan, 1934).

(Published in Guy Debord, Correspondance, Volume 1, 1957-1960. Footnotes by Alice Debord, except where noted. Translated from the French by NOT BORED! October 2005.)

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