from Guy Debord

To Gerard Lebovici
29 November 1978
Dear Gerard:

Here is the letter[1] that I propose that you send, upon your return, to La Pietra.[2] It is necessary to strike hard, because the affair is serious: the fashionability of the situationists grows terribly fast in Italy and [Rene] Vienet, in flight from everywhere else, will try to profit there, due to the fact that he still has not been publicly denounced. In any case, he merits it now: I hope "Vol. 2"[3] will be as good as the first one. It will be necessary to attach to this letter several pages clipped from The Veritable Split[4] (pages 109, 110, 111, 112), by crossing out everything that surrounds the passage that begins "Stupid imprudence is pushed still further . . ." and ending with this quotation: "From here to assassination, it is only a step" (p. 111). It will also be necessary to send copies to [Paolo] Salvadori and [Gianfranco] Sanguinetti, and this action must also figure in the letter to La Pietra.

I hope that we can quickly conclude the assignation of Gruet. Details annexed to the same troubles: you have told me that the question of the payment slips was being arranged.[5] Can you send them quickly to Elisabeth? The social services, having finally appeared, want to claim them.

I hope that Japan pleased you. Here, we are buried upon snow, and almost blockaded. Yesterday, the postman could only depart after calling for a tractor. I hope to confer this letter to him today, but there is a chance of not seeing him for some time.

When will you be coming here? Best wishes,

(Following an encounter in Geneva, I see the possibility of an equivalent to the Letter from Dakar,[6] coming from a prison in Spain.[7])


Our friends in Italy inform us of a rumor, according to which your publishing house has the intention of publishing an Italian translation of the journal Internationale Situationniste. We hope that this project has only been envisioned by one of your employees, who must be dangerously irresponsible and that, in any case, you will no longer think of it again.

As a matter of fact, Editions Champ Libre has possessed the rights to the complete reprinting of this journal since 1975, and we would in no case cede them to a publisher like you, who has been and remains close to Stalinism.

Furthermore, although this journal, when it was being published, allowed anyone who wanted the liberty to reproduce any of its articles the opportunity to do so, there was no idea that a collection of the totality of these texts -- and thus the name of the editor, Guy Debord -- would be published by a contemptible publishing house. Debord does not want a publisher such as you.

Mr Feltrinelli, more celebrated than you in this same line, asked to publish a translation of this very journal in 1971, and he was refused for the same reasons. He insisted quite clumsily,[8] and finally he could not.[9]

Do not think that your recent publication of a small masperized[10] book of documents,[11] which Mr [Rene] Vienet signed in 1968, has given you the possibility of feigning to have relations with more serious people. Mr Vienet is free to participate in symposia with the Stalinists who are associated with you: this clown, for years, is scorned here by everyone. But your efforts of recuperation will be limited to this stale merchandise.

We desire that you take good note of the inanity of a project to which we are opposed and to which we will be opposed in the strongest way.

[1] See below.

[2] Italian publishing house that wanted to reprint the full run of the journal Internationale Situationniste.

[3] Of the Correspondence of Editions Champ Libre (see pages 15-27 in "Volume 2" for this affair).

[4] Translator's note: Public Circular of the Situationist International, published in 1972 by Champ Libre.

[5] At the request of Guy Debord, Editions Champ Libre remunerated the despoiled daughter of the millionaire [Pierre] Gruet, so as to permit her to prove professional employment.

[6] Letter from Dakar, sent by "A Free Association of Free Individuals" (who were imprisoned) to Champ Libre, which published it in October 1978.

[7] Antonia Lopez-Pintor (called the Andalusian) would be the initiator of a campaign to get various autonomes released from the prison on Segovia.

[8] Translator's note: See the Letters to a Publisher.

[9] Translator's note: Giangiacomo Feltrinelli was killed on 14 March 1972, apparently trying to engage in an act of sabotage.

[10] Translator's note: Adjectivization of the name of the French publisher Editions Maspero, which tended to publish bastardized texts.

[11] Enrages and Situationists in the Occupations Movement.

(Published in Guy Debord Correspondance, Vol 5: Janvier 1973-Decembre 1978 by Librairie Artheme Fayard, 2005. Translated from the French by NOT BORED! April 2007. Footnotes by Alice Debord, except where noted.)

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