Revised and expanded edition of Ken Knabb’s translations from the notorious group that helped trigger the May 1968 revolt in France. Articles, leaflets, graffiti, and internal documents by Guy Debord, Raoul Vaneigem, etc., from the situationists’ early experiments in cultural subversion and urban “psychogeography” to their lucid analyses of the Watts riot, the Vietnam War, the Prague Spring, the Chinese “Cultural Revolution,” and other crises and upheavals of the sixties.
The Society of the Spectacle (Guy Debord)
Knabb’s translation of the most important radical book of the twentieth century. This new edition is the first in any language to include extensive annotations, clarifying the historical allusions and revealing the sources of Debord’s “détournements.”
The latest news about Debord’s films, along with Knabb’s translations of the filmscripts.
Three decades of Ken Knabb’s own writings (1970-1997): two substantial new texts “The Joy of Revolution” (visions of a liberated society and how we might get there) and “Confessions of a Mild-Mannered Enemy of the State” (autobiography) plus earlier articles, leaflets, and posters on the sixties counterculture, Wilhelm Reich, Kenneth Rexroth, Gary Snyder, radical Buddhists, Chinese anarchists, the 1970 Polish revolt, the 1979 Iranian uprising, the 1991 Gulf war, etc.
Knabb’s writings since the publication of Public Secrets (1997), including “We Don’t Want Full Employment, We Want Full Lives!” (1998); “The Poverty of Primitivism” (2001); “Reflections on the Uprising in France” (2006); “Ten Years on the Web” (2008); six texts on the Occupy movement (2011-2012); “Out in the Open: Remarks on the Trump Election” (2016); “Pregnant Pause: Remarks on the Corona Crisis” (2020); “The Secret World of French Songs” (2021); “Travel Diaries 1971-2018” (2021); “Inventory of the Ken Knabb Papers at Yale” (2022); and “Rapid Responses” (brief replies to email queries from 1999 to present).
Comics, leaflets, and scandals of three early Bay Area situationist groups (1970-1972).
Although the Vietnam War is still well known, few people are aware of the decades of struggles against the French colonial regime that preceded it, many of which had no connection with the Stalinists (Ho Chi Minh’s Communist Party). The Stalinists were ultimately victorious, but only after they systematically destroyed all the other oppositional currents. This book is the story of those other movements and revolts, caught in the crossfire between the French and the Stalinists, told by one of the few survivors.
Provocative radical documents, old and new, by Karl Marx, Clarence Darrow, Randolph Bourne, Bertolt Brecht, Karl Korsch, Josef Weber, Asger Jorn, Paul Goodman, Gary Snyder, Jo Freeman, Raoul Vaneigem, etc.
A list of over 500 books that Knabb recommends — classic and modern literature, religion and philosophy, science and psychology, humor and comics, history and revolution — with brief comments on why they are worth reading and passages from some of the recommended works.
A huge archive of works by and about the great writer and social critic, who wryly described his main themes as “sex, mysticism, and revolution,” and who was the leading inspiration behind the San Francisco Renaissance of the fifties and sixties. Includes two complete out-of-print books (Communalism: From Its Origins to the Twentieth Century and Camping in the Western Mountains); excerpts from his Autobiography and Classics Revisited; a generous selection of his poems, essays, reviews, and translations; his complete San Francisco journalism (more than 800 columns and articles); and links to dozens of articles about him.
Unless otherwise indicated, any of the texts published by the Bureau of Public Secrets
or posted at this website may be freely reproduced, translated, or adapted.