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Skeleton Key to Guy Debord

by Len Bracken

1931 - Born in Paris, December 28.

1950 - Meeting with the Lettrists under the leadership of Isidore Isou.

1952 - "Prolegomena to all future cinema" published in Ion, along with the first textual version (when images were still in the plan) of his masterpiece, the film Howling in Favor of Sade. "Go home Mr. Chaplin" scandal and the split with Isou's Lettrist movement and the foundation of the Lettrist International.

1953 - Attempted suicide by asphyxiation. "To Put an End to Nihilistic Comfort" published in Lettrist International #3.

1954 - Potlatch #1-15 (journal of the L. I.). In additon to collectively written articles Debord published "All the Water in the Sea Can't..." in #1; "Exercise in Psychogeography" in #2; "Pin Yin Against Vache" in #3; "Economically Weak" in #15. Prank by the L.I. on Breton and the surrealists on a co-published flyer against a special edition of the journal Drunken Boat on Rimbaud's centenary.

1955 - Potlatch #16-24. Debord published "The Big Sleep and its Clients," "Worse Than Adamov," in #16 and "The Value of Education" in #16, #17 and #18; "Archtecture and Play," in #20; "The Last Days of Pompei," (with Mohamed Dahou) in #21; "Why Lettrism?" (with Gil Wolman) in #22; Publication of a new version of Howling in Favor of Sade and "Introduction to a Critique of Urban Geography" in Naked Lips.

1956 - Potlatch #25-27. "Detournement: How to Use" (with Gil Wolman) and "Theory of the Derive" published in Naked Lips.

1957 - Potlatch #28-29. Debord published "One Step Back" in #28; and "Still More Effort if You Want to Be Situationists" in #29. Foundation of the Situationist International at Cosio d'Arroscia. Publication of Fin de Copenhague with Asger Jorn (Imaginist Bauhaus). Report on the Construction of Situations and on the Conditions for Organization and Action of the Situationist International Tendency (internal S.I. document).

1958 - Second S.I. Congress in Paris. "Preliminary Problems in the Construction of a Situation" and "Theses and Cultural Revolution." published in issue #1 of Situationist International. "The Declaration of Amsterdam," (with Constant) in #2. Publication in the journal of Stediljick Museum of the essay "Ten Years of Experimental Art: Jorn and his role in theoretical invention."

1959 - "Situationist Positions on Circulation" in Situationist International #3. Memoires, a book of collages, created with Asger Jorn. Third S.I. Congress in Munich. Filming of On the Passage of a Few People Through a Rather Brief Period of Time. Potlatch #30 as an internal S.I. bulletin, including Debord's "The Role of Potlatch, Then and Now."

1960 - "A Propos a Few Errors of Interpretation" in Situationist International #4. "Towards a Unified Revolutionary Program" written with Canjuers of Socialisme ou Barbarie. Filming of Critique of Separation. Fourth S.I. Conference in London and the screening of Howlings in Favor of Sade at the Institute of Contemporary Art. First meeting of S.I. Central Council in Brussels. Issue #5 of Situationist International.

1961 - Meetings of S.I. Central Council in Paris and Munich. Cassette of "Perspectives for Conscious Alterations in Daily Life" played at a conference of the Group for Research on Everyday Life convened by Henri Lefebvre (also published in issue #6 of Situationist International). Fifth S.I. Conference in Goteborg. For a Revolutionary Judgment of Art.

1962 - Meeting of S.I. Central Council in Paris. Issue #7 of Situationist International journal. Sixth S.I. Conference in Anvers. Theses on the Paris Commune (essay with Kotanyi and Vaneigem).

1963 - Issue #8 of Situationist International. The Situationists and New Forms of Action in Politics and Art (essay). Break with Henri Lefebvre.

1964 - Issue #9 of Situationist International. Publication of Against Cinema by the Scandinavian Institute of Comparative Vandalism.

1965 - Address to the Revolutionaries of Algeria and of all Countries. Decline and Fall of the Spectacle-Commodity Economy (on Watts riots). Both tracts translated and widely diffused.

1966 - Issue #10 of Situationist International. Seventh S.I. Conference in Paris.

1967 - Publication of Society of the Spectacle by Buchet-Chastel - Debord published the first chapter in issue #11 of Situationist International.

1968 - Participation in the revolution of May, Paris - at the barricades and in the occupation of the Sorbonne. Diffusion of numerous tracts calling for the immediate occupation of all factories in France. "The Question of Organization for the S.I." following the events with a note added in August of 1969.

1969 - Issue #12 Situationist International. Eighth S.I. Congress in Venice.

1970 - Decisive year of The Debate of Orientation of the ex-Situationist International (these letters and internal S.I. documents were published in 1974 by Centre de Recherche sur la Question Sociale).

1971 - Society of the Spectacle pirated by Champ Libre - beginning of collaboration with Gerard Lebovici.

1972 - The Real Split in the International (with Gianfranco Sanguinetti).

1973 - Film version of Society of the Spectacle (Simar Films).

1975 - Refutation of all judgments, whether for or against, which have been brought to date on the film Society of the Spectacle (Simar Films).

1976 - Debord's translation of The Real Report on the Last Chances to Save Capitalism in Italy by Censor (Gianfranco Sanguinetti).

1978 - In girum Imus Nocte et Consumimur Igni (Simar Films). Complete Cinematic Works (Champ Libre).

1979 - Preface to the Fourth Italian Edition of Society of the Spectacle.

1980 - Translation of Jorge Manrique's Stanzas on the Death of His Father (Champ Libre).

1982 - Publication of a book of reviews, without commentary: Refuse and Rubble: unpacked on the release of the film "In Girum Imus Nocte et Consumimur Igni." (Champ Libre).

1984 - Assassination of Gerard Lebovici, Debord's friend, publisher and producer. Police interrogations. Defamation of Debord in the press concerning the murder. His subsequent libel suits were victorious. Auto-censorship of his films in protest.

1985 - Considerations on the Assassination of Gerard Lebovici (Editions Gerard Lebovici).

1987 - The Game of War with Alice Becker-Ho, his second wife (Editions Gerard Lebovici).

1988 - Comments on the Society of the Spectacle (Editions Gerard Lebovici).

1989 - Panegyric volume 1 (Editions Gerard Lebovici).

1990 - The Princes of Jargon by Alice Becker-Ho (Editions Gerard Lebovici). Publication of the critical edition of In Girum Imus Nocte et Consumimur Igni (Editions Gerard Lebovici). Death of Floriana Lebovici. Diagnosis of polynevrite alcoolique. Negotiation by Jean-Jacques Pauvert with Gallimard for the reprint of the essential works of Guy Debord.

1993 "This bad reputation..." (Gallimard). Reprint of Memoires (Les Belles Lettres).

1994 Collaboration with Brigitte Cornand on the anti-television film Guy Debord, son art, son temps.

Suicide at sixty-two in Champot, Upper Loire. Ashes scattered on the point of ile de la Cite, Paris.

1995 The Contracts (Le temps qu'il fait).

Len Bracken

Psychogeographer, bon vivant. Co-Founder of the First Extranational. Author of several books: Stasi Slut, Freeplay, Secret City and numerous tracts, articles and pamphlets. Len does not use email, but you can write him through the LenGate.