Wednesday, July 13, 2005

The Pleasures of Existence

"A description of The Rural Life of England, which Howitt published in 1840, exhibited a no doubt excessively generalized satisfaction in concluding that every man who has a feeling for the pleasures of existence should thank Heaven for having let him live in such a country at such a time. But, on the contrary, our era dares not render too emphatically, with regard to the life that is lived now, the general disgust and the beginnings of terror that are felt in so many areas. They are felt, but never expressed before bloody revolts. The reasons for this are simple. The pleasures of existence have recently been redefined in an authoritarian way — first in their priorities, and then in their entire substance. And these authorities who redefined them could just as well decide at any moment, without having to burden themselves with any other consideration, which modification could be most lucratively introduced into the techniques of their manufacture, completely liberated from the need to please. For the first time, the same people are the masters of everything that is done and of everything that is said about it. And so Madness “hath builded her house . . . on the highest places of the city.”

-- Guy Debord Panegyric


At 6:21 PM, Blogger Publius Americanus said...

It's good to see that someone besides Michael Hoy (publisher of Loompanics) is reading Debord... The anarchist thinkers are some of the most provocative sources being read today. What they inspire for the 21st century may not be anarchism, but might be very characteristic of thinkers like Debord (and I hope Thoreau, Red Cloud, Geronimo, and other American thinkers...)


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