from Guy Debord

To J. V. Martin
5 April 1962
Dear Martin:

Bravo for the tract and the distribution! The translation is good -- it is only necessary to note, for future translations, that one should also translate the name of the movement into each language: the Situationist International (thus, in English: the S.I.), the Central Council, or [in German] der Zentralrat, etc.

One can say to the man who worries about UNESCO: "We think about a take-over of UNESCO one day as a scandal intended to denounce the bureaucratization of culture and the agreement of all State forces of the world on the preservation and diffusion of a unique cultural model. We ourselves do not want to become a new generation of cultural bureaucrats, neither in UNESCO, nor elsewhere." (Thus, perhaps we might understand if this biologist-editor [of whom you speak] respects or scorns UNESCO. It is an interesting question.)

On Monday or Tuesday, I will send you many copies of our #7 [of Internationale Situationniste]. You can make a wide enough distribution, even among people who don't read French. Because the simple appearance of this journal shows that the weight of the SI isn't on the side of the Nashists.

I recommend only that you do not give one to [Verner] Permild. Permild is a big [art] collector. He has received [copies of] I.S. in the past. Since he has refused to aid you, this time I have sent him only the cover, with the pages removed, except for the anti-Nash page. As a general rule, [Asger] Jorn's friends in Denmark will march with us when they have understood what's at stake in this story. But it is better to expect that they will be sufficiently well-informed on their own. Because if someone now says (in Permild's style) that he only wants to support the SI if Jorn agrees to it, this response would oblige us to refuse discussions with him much later on. As a rupture with these people is contrary to our interests, we can prefer, tactically, to let him have time. Because there is a question of principles on which we can not yield: it would be better to break with all of Jorn's admirers than to accept support that is given to the SI only to the extent that the SI is recommended by a "glorious master." This will also be very shocking from Jorn's point of view, which his old Scandanavian friends don't know rather well.

Concerning the contract for Hanegal.[1] I believe that the SI (or at least Jorn) already paid the price of its printing last year. I will verify this. But, in any case, there is a simple rule. Don't pay [Jorgen] Nash anything, in any case. On the contrary, you can demand from him 1/3 of the sales [of this book] for you and 1/3 for the SI. Naturally, I see all of this through the optic of total conflict between Nash and us. If he wants to reach a settlement, he must first state publically that he -- and thus Elde, Katia, etc. -- are out of the SI, after publishing a fake document. Thus the question of the SI's 1/3 will be settled.

If he isn't happy with this, perhaps he'd like to bring a lawsuit? This would be very droll for the Scandanavian avant-garde. In that case, it would be necessary to consider the contract of which you have a photocopy to also be a fake. There isn't a commercial "Editions SI." But I am personally the one who is juridically responsible (the managing editor) for the [SI] journal, which has a legal existence (several publications related to the journal have had rue Montagne-Genevieve as their official address). And I absolutely do not know any Dominique de Masperot (?). I have never heard this name before. I don't even know if he really exists. Nash is in the habit of imitation the way fish are in water.

I say all this so that you can defend yourself if he attacks on this terrain. But I hope there will be no more problems where this is concerned. I will re-send to you the [book's] negatives, after I've made a print (to give to Jorn).

I will transmit to Uwe Lausen the idea of going to Randers.[2] But I don't know if he can go. He has plenty of actions to make in Munich. And, naturally, his economic difficulties are great.

I hope that we can come to Denmark soon after the Antwerp conference.

Cordially yours,

[1] Hanegal, gallisk poesie-album, a book by Jorgen Nash, illustrated by J.V. Martin, and published by the Situationist International in February 1961.

[2] Where J.V. Martin lived.

(Published in Guy Debord, Correspondance, Volume 2, 1960-1964. Footnotes by Alice Debord. Translated from the French by NOT BORED! May 2005.)

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