from Guy Debord

To Jean-Francois Martos
2 May 1986
Dear Jeff:

Thank you for sending the first part of your manuscript.[1] We can thus hope to see the whole thing in the not too distant future.

As you can imagine, I will be very curious to read it. Actually, for the moment, I find it more suitable to read none of it before having the complete and definitive manuscript. I think there would be something painfully artificial in reading it but not speaking to you about it. And if I were to speak to you about it, it seems to me that I would risk intervening in a certain way, even very indirectly, in your choices, which should not be influenced by any external considerations.

When the diverse enrages/failures reproach you for having, once more, set up a kit on a subject that they themselves see very differently, you can respond that, after fourteen years, with documents that have been accessible to everyone from the beginning, you have been the first to freely treat the questions that no one else has ever approached. Thus there has been even less "competition" here than on the subject of Poland, and the famous good faith of your critiques[2] would appear in a still more burlesque light!

The foul Gayraud (I have forgotten who Mercier[3] is) projects his handsome mentality on what he imagines about you. He declares with any doubt that, if he were on good terms with Floriana [Lebovici], he would have the duty to express in a newspaper his praise for a film that she had produced (so that she would recover his capital, perhaps?). The hatred of these larva honors you. But I believe that he could find the truth in the Stalineries of Chklovski, Nakov, Sokologorski and Robel.[4] And this is unfortunately less honorable for Champ Libre, although the remarks of such moralists smell of vomit, so that one understands them perfectly.

The nuclear industry begins to keep its promises.[5] I thus foresee that the spectacle will speak of it less and less: the "dangerous" threshold will be revised upwards. One already dies that the destruction of a power plant would kill more people than the confrontation at the rue Gay-Lussac.[6] Will we speak again of miraculous chances? No, this will be the rule.

Best wishes,

[1] History of the Situationist International.

[2] Translator's note: "It is on us that they fire in Warsaw" (December 1981).

[3] Authors of Remonstrances and rectifications addressed to a Parisian publisher, on the use of those who present themselves as the "party of the truth," signed "The friends of Boris and Ossip."

[4] All published by Champ Libre.

[5] On 26 April [1986], the nuclear catastrophe at Chernobyl, 120 km north of Kiev, in the Ukraine, took place.

[6] Translator's note: street on which the situationists erected barricades in May 1968. See letter dated 29 August 1981.

(Published in Guy Debord Correspondance, Vol 6: Janvier 1979-Decembre 1987 by Librairie Artheme Fayard, 2006. Translated from the French by NOT BORED! June 2007. Footnotes by Alice Debord, except where noted.)

To Contact NOT BORED!
ISSN 1084-7340.
Snail mail: POB 1115, Stuyvesant Station, New York City 10009-9998