Monday, 2 June 2008

Surrealism and Situtationism

Surréalistes et situationnistes, vies parallèles
"Histoire et documents"
Jérôme Duwa. Préface de Christophe Bourseiller
Editions Dilecta : Paris 2008
237 pp.

André Breton and Guy Debord never met. It seems indeed that both were mutually exclusive, so to the sense that Breton and surrealism were said to belong to the past, which World War II had just erased, so that everything had to start from scratch again. But such ahasty judgment on surrealism has to be reconsidered in a spirit which refuses to settle old scores. Was the reason, then, a fundamental divergence or a profound, secret likeness hidden behind superficial rivalry? A detailed history of the up and down relationships between the Paris and Brussels surrealists on the one hand, and Guy Debord and the Situationnists on the other, remained to be written so as to understand one of the mainsprings of the construction of the Situationnist identity. This essay, which includes an anthology of declarations and pamphlets,a dozen illustrations and texts by Jean-Louis Bédouin, André Breton, Claude Courtot, Adrien Dax, Guy Debord, Tom Gutt, Simon Hantaï, Gérard Legrand, Marcel Mariën, Benjamin Péret, José Pierre, Jean Schuster, Jan Strijbosch, Raoul Vaneigem and Joseph Wolman, helps follow the tumultuous course of those parallel lives.

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