Friday, 3 February 2012

Poetry of the Spectacle

A short film about the alienation of
our lives in modern capitalism
influenced by ideas of the
Situationist International. (by Magenta Netzwerk)-

"The society whose modernisation has reached the stage of integrated spectacle is characterised by the combined effect of 5 principal factors; incessant technological renewal, integration of state and economy, generalised secrecy, unanswerable lies and eternal present - the spectator is simply supposed to know nothing and deserves nothing. Those who are watching to see what happens next will never actand such must be the spectator's condition ."

- Guy Debord.

Here the SPECTACLE is captured and made to expose itself (if even for a brief moment) by turning its most beloved mystifying commodity, the computer, back onto itself to the benefit of language. It slowly dies a dramatic death of Lettritic convulsions.


In societies where modern conditions of production prevail, life is presented as an immense accumulation of spectacles. Everything that was directly lived is now merely represented in the distance.

The spectacle is not a collection of images; it is a social relation between people that is mediated by images. The spectacle is capital accumulated to the point that it becomes images.
The spectacle cannot be understood as a mere visual description produced by mass-media technologies. It is a worldview that has actually been materialized.

Understood in its totality, the spectacle is both the result and the goal of the dominant mode of production. It is not a mere decoration added to the real world. It is the very heart of this real society's unreality. In all its particular manifestations - news, propoganda, advertising, entertainment - the spectacle represents the dominant model of life. It is the omnipresent affirmation of the choices that have already been made in the sphere of production and in the consumption implied by the production. In both form and content the spectacle serves as a total justification of the conditions and goals of the existing system. The spectacle also represents the constant presence of this justification since it monopolizes the majority of the time spent outside the production process.

The spectacle is both the meaning and the agenda of our particular socio-economic formation. It is the historical moment in which we are caught.

The spectacle presents itself as a vast inaccessible reality that can never be questioned. Itssole message is: "What appears is good, what is good appears." The passive acceptance it demands is already effectively imposed by its monopoly of appearances, its manner of appearing without allowing any reply.

The first stage of the economy's domination of social life is brought about an evident degradation of being into having - human fulfillment was no longer equated with what one was, but what one possessed. The present stage, in which social life has become completely dominated by the accumulated productions of the economy, is bringing about a general shift from appearing -all "having" must derive its immediate prestige and its ultimate purpose from appearances.


The problem of language is at the heart of all the struggles between the forces striving to abolish the present alienation and those striving to maintain it. It is inseperable from the very terrain of those struggles. We live within language as within polluted air. Despite what humorists think, words do not play. Words work - on behalf of the dominant organization of life. Yet they are not completely automated: unfortunately for the theoreticians of infomation words are not in themselves "informationist", they contain forces that can upset the most careful calculations. Words coexist with power in relation analogous to that which proletarians have with power. Employed by it almost full time, exploited for every sense and nonsense that can be squeezed out of them, they still remain in some sense fundamentally alien to it.

Under the control of power, language always designates something other than authentic experience. It  is precisely for this reason that a total contestation is possible. The organization of language has fallen into such confusion that the communication imposed by power isexposing itsef as an imposter and a dupery. An embryonic cybernetic power is vainly trying to put out language under the control of the machines it controls, in such a way that infomation would henceforth be the only possible communication. Even on this terrain resistances are beng manifested, electronic music could be seen as an attempt ( obviously limited and ambiguous) to reverse the domination by detourning machines to the benefit of language. But there is a musch more general and radical opposition that is denouncing all unilateral "communication," in theold form of art as well as in the modern form of informationism. It calls for a communication that undermines all seperate power. Real comunication dissolves the state.

Power lives of stolen goods. It creates nothing, it coopts. If it determined the meaning of words, there would be no poetry but only useful "infomation."  Opposition would be unable to express itself in language; any refusal would be nonverbal, purely lettristic. What is poetry if not the revolutionary moment of language, inseperable as such from the revolutionary moments of history and the history of personal life?

                                           put the mirror to the moment  make us aware, 
                                           facilitate, reconcile, get  a new idea  
                                           the pulsating spectacle , is easy to forget 
                                           when  the prism cracks, get yourself new silhouette


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