from Guy Debord

To Gianfranco Sanguinetti
Wednesday, 30 July [19]71
Caro amico mio [my dear friend]:

We have been reassured by your telegram and your letter, which informed us that you are in Milan.[1] After your disappearance on Tuesday, I began to fear that a sealed letter from SM Marcellin XIV had sent you right to the Bastille.

Since there is no longer time to cry over the sad aspects of this stunning expulsion (of which the details are, nevertheless, very amusing), we can begin to envision what's good: the SI is, "from now on, recognized as a power" by several powers of that old scoundrel, Europe, etc.

Riesel's vacation being prolonged, I completely renounce the idea of immediately issuing a tract, of which I myself am very uncertain. It would be more "situ" to, as always, coldly write the history in the next issue. Obviously, the risks of confiscation, which are already great after this affair, will be even greater when this affair is related in I.S. #13. But I would be quite surprised if a confiscation succeeds in suffocating the distribution of this issue.

As soon as you are settled in Florence, your first task will thus be to draft better and sooner the text on the immense Italian question [19]69-71. Send me all supplemental information that you have on your dossier and the Marcellinist accusations.

I leave Paris tomorrow to rejoin [Michele] Bernstein in l'Ile de Re. Without doubt, I will remain there until 20 August. Afterward, Paris at the same address, I hope. Thus, for the time being, for all questions that must be settled in Paris, you must write to [Rene] Riesel directly (I suppose you can send to him the key to the P.O.B. in a small package). Riesel will return on 1 August.

I send this letter to the casella postale [post office box] thinking that it will follow you if you have left Milan. I attach to it three letters for you that arrived here. As soon as you know your Italian address, give it to me by a note addressed to: Alice Becker, general delivery, 17 Saint-Martin-de-Re.

Naturally, also remain in contact with Vaconsin.[2] And we hope that Mignoli will do the rest.

I have said to Jean-Pierre[3] that, in any case, you will be my assistant [in the shooting of La Societe du Spectacle]. So that, if the Beotians want to prevent you from re-entering France during filming, he can arrange within the system of co-productions the making of a new scandal against the shackles placed upon artistic creation and the European cinematographic industry. I hope that your role will be more than symbolic in this function, because the principal advantage that it permits is that you can easily make a film yourself. Thus, it would be very useful if, at the moment you have attained the celebrity sufficient for this, you have also learned several small techniques! (which can be learned from a single film).

I hope that the journal will come out in October and that you will be able to come to Venice in November, in its sadder light.

Tell Connie that if she doesn't receive the banished one, we will no longer love her.

We embrace you.

[1] By a ministerial decision of 21 July 1971, Gianfranco Sanguinetti was advised of a refusal to allow him to stay and summoned to leave French territory. He was soon conducted by a truck to the airport and placed on a plane heading to Italy. [Translator: Raymond Marcellin was France's Minister of the Interior at the time. "SM Marcellin XIV" is a play upon King Louis XIV.]

[2] Master Vaconsin, correspondent of Master Mignoli, Gianfranco Sanguinetti's Italian lawyer.

[3] Jean-Pierre Voyer, who was considering being a film producer at the time of the realization of the film La Societe du Spectacle. [Translator: both Voyer and Sanguinetti are listed as assisant directors in the film's credits.]

(Published in Guy Debord, Correspondance, Volume 4, 1969-1972. Footnotes by Alice Debord, except where noted. Translated from the French and, when necessary, from the Italian by NOT BORED! July 2005.)

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