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Class Wargames presents: Guy Debord’s “The Game of War”

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Just got an email from Richard Barbrook- whose fantastic "The High-Tech Gift Economy" text is going to be published in our Memefest reader this November.

He is working on this fantastic project. Here is a description and the first part of the movie:


“In the early-1970s, Debord created his film adaptation of The Society of the Spectacle by splicing together clips taken from other people’s movies and then adding his own soundtrack. When social relations between individuals are mediated through images, this avantgarde technique of détournement acts as the proletarian antidote to capitalist monopolisation of historical memory. Quoting from the products of commercial cinema involves much more than recruiting glamourous movie stars and expensive special effects for audiovisual subversion. As Debord emphasised, these borrowed film excerpts are transformed in the editing process into a revolutionary critique of the spectacular misrepresentation of the human adventure. Torn out of its original context and carefully placed in a new juxtaposition, the cinematic propaganda of the class enemy can be turned against itself. The imagery of bourgeois ideology must be metamorphosed into the elucidation of Situationist theory. Expropriating the media expropriators is the premonition of cybernetic communism in the present.

When Debord was working on the film adaptation of The Society of the Spectacle in the early-1970s, making a movie out of movie clips was very difficult. Buying celluloid stock, hiring editing suites and organising cinema screenings had required serious money from a generous sponsor. Fortunately, over the past three-and-ahalf decades, digital technology has caught up with this Situationist technique. Class Wargames only needed a small grant from the Arts Council to fund a film constructed on a Mac laptop with Final Cut out of video from our performances and excerpts from our DVD collection. Best of all, we are now able to distribute our cinematic creation to a worldwide audience for free over the Net. Détournement is no longer the privilege of a minority of avant-garde artists. Media communism is now embedded in everyday life. Become a 21st century Debord – a director of remixed movies. Sweep away the anachronistic barriers of intellectual property. Switch on the computer, start up the video editing software, plug in an external drive filled with rendered DVDs and begin making your own film. Everyone is a practical Situationist.”

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