New Translations for Debord Films (Soundtracks)

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Date/Time: 15/10/2003 12:00 am

New translations of the soundtracks from all six of Guy Debord’s films are
now online at http://www.bopsecrets.org/SI/debord.films .
Some excerpts:
“The spectacle is not a collection of images; it is a social relation
between people that is mediated by images. . . . Spectators are linked
solely by their one-way relationship to the very center that keeps them
isolated from each other.”
“The function of the cinema, whether dramatic or documentary, is to present
a false and isolated coherence as a substitute for a communication and
activity that are absent.”
“Society broadcasts to itself its own image of its own history, a history
reduced to a superficial and static pageant of its rulers — the persons who
embody the apparent inevitability of whatever happens.”
“This dominant equilibrium is brought back into question each time unknown
people try to live differently. But it was always far away. We learn of it
through the papers and newscasts. We remain outside it, relating to it as
just another spectacle. We are separated from it by our own
“Others unthinkingly followed the paths learned once and for all, to their
work and their home, to their predictable future. For them, duty had already
become a habit, and habit a duty. They did not see the deficiency of their
city. They thought the deficiency of their life was natural. We wanted to
break out of this conditioning, in search of different uses of the urban
landscape, in search of new passions.”
“Thus was mapped out a program calculated to undermine the credibility of
the entire organization of social life. Classes and specializations, work
and entertainment, commodities and urbanism, ideology and the state — we
showed that it all needed to be scrapped. . . . These perspectives have now
been widely adopted, and people everywhere are fighting for or against them.
But back then they would certainly have seemed delirious, if the behavior of
modern capitalism had not been even more delirious.”
“The only interesting venture is the liberation of everyday life, not only
in a historical perspective, but for us, right now. This project implies the
withering away of all the alienated forms of communication. The cinema, too,
must be destroyed.”
* * *
“Making petrified conditions dance by singing them their own tune.”