Raoul Vaneigem

Bio: Born 21 March 1934 in Lessines, Belgium. Father, Paul Vaneigem, was a Socialist, anticlerical railway worker. Mother's name: Marguerite Tilte. Between 1951 and 1956, Raoul pursued and obtained a degree in Roman philology at the Free University of Brussels. Between 1956 and 1964, he was a professor at the Ecole Normale de Nivelles. In 1960, he sent his work about French poetry to Henri Lefebvre, who then forwarded it to Guy Debord. In 1961, he joined the Situationist International, and remained a member until his resignation in November 1970. Between 1964 and 1972, he was the editor of the Encyclopedia of the Current World. In 1986, he began work on an Encyclopedia Universalis. Especially in the 1990s and 2000s, he published a great many nonfiction books, as well as a novel. The father of three children, he now splits his time between Belgium and Barcelona.


Newspaper photo of him at a demonstration circa 1960-1961 (detail). Full image.
With Guy Debord in the early 1960s.
By himself in 2003.
In 2005.

Reviews of his books

The Movement of the Free Spirit (1986)
A Declaration of the Rights of Human Beings: On the Sovereignty of Life as Surpassing the Rights of Man (2000).

Texts in Translation

Isidore Ducasse and the Count of Lautreamont in the Poesies 1958
Fragments pour une Poetique 1960

Situationist International:
First letter to Guy Debord, 24 January 1961
Letter to Guy Debord, 19 February 1961
Life goes by, life escapes (song lyrics) 1961
Basic Program of the Bureau of Unitary Urbanism (with Attila Kotanyi) Internationale Situationniste #6, 1961
Theses on the Paris Commune (with Guy Debord and Attila Kotanyi), 18 March 1962
Basic Banalities, part one, Internationale Situationniste #7, 1962
Basic Banalities, part two, Internationale Situationniste #8, 1963
Ideologies, Classes and the Domination of Nature Internationale Situationniste #8, 1963
No dialogue with people who are suspect, no dialogue with cunts, (with Jan Strijbosch) published as tract, 27 February 1963
"The Revolution of Everyday Life," 1963-1965
Some Theoretical Topics That Need To Be Dealt With Without Academic Debate or Idle Speculation Internationale Situationniste #10, 1966
Aiming for Practical Truth Internationale Situationniste #11, 1967
Notice to the Civilized Concerning Self-Management Internationale Situationniste #12, 1969

Situationist Orientation Debate:
Notes on the orientation of the SI March 1970
Several precise points 23 April 1970
Note of synthesis for the meeting of 19 May 1970 May 1970
Letter of resignation from the Situationist International, 14 November 1970

“Terrorism or Revolution, an introduction to Ernest Coeurderoy” (1972)
Contributions to The Revolutionary Struggle, Intended To Be Discussed, Corrected, And Principally, Put Into Practice Without Delay (1974)
From Wildcat Strike to Total Self-Management (1974)
A Cavalier History of Surrealism (1977)
The Book of Pleasures (1979)
“A Warning to Students of All Ages” (1995)
“In Praise of Refined Laziness” (1996)
Foreword to “The Inhumanity of Religion” (2000)
“Preliminary Notes on a Project for the Construction of Oarystis, the City of Desires” (2002)
Interview (2003)
“The Prisons Must Be Destroyed” (2004)
New preface to “The Movement of the Free Spirit” (2005)
“Appeal from a partisan of individual and collective autonomy” (2006)
“Long Live Oaxaca!” (2006)
“Answers to Six Questions” (2007)
“Long live the Commune!” (2007)
“Homage to André Aubry” (2007)
“The Insurrection of Life: An Interview” (2008)
“Life has every right and predation has none”: An interview (2008)
“What's Free is the Absolute Weapon” (2011)
“Greece: the Cradle of a New World” (2012)
“Song of the Resigned” (2012)
“Beyond the Impossible” 2012
“Greece Learns to Do Without the State” (2014)
“Nothing Has Ended; Everything Begins” (excerpts) (2014)
“Obscurantism has always been power’s way of illuminating things” (2015)
Self-Portraits and Caricatures of the Situationist International (2015)
“A Thousand Erotic Games” (Hieronymus Bosch) (2016)
Message of support for the ZAD at Notre Dame des Landes and a song (2018)
“The Reasons of Wrath” (2018)
Concerning the "Yellow Vests": Everything is possible, even self-managing assemblies in the middle of street intersections, villages and neighborhoods (2018)
“Create Territories” (2019)
“Try to save established social rights? They are already lost”: An interview (2019)
“We Have No Other Alternative Than to Dare the Impossible” (Complete text of interview given to Le Monde) (2019)
“The rebirth of the human is the only growth that is acceptable to us” (2019)
“Everything Starts Here and Now” (2019)
“The Zapatistas’ Fight is the Universal Fight of Life Against the Desertification of the Earth” (2019)
“Salute to Diego” (2019)
“Unity and Differences in the Insurrections in France and Chile” (2020)
“For the Commune” (2020)
“Coronovirus” (2020)
“People of the World, One More Effort!” (2020)
“We Decree the Self-Defense of Our Health” (2020)
“The Branch of Freedom” (2020)
“The Branch of Liberty” (2020)
Letter to Laurence Mekhitarian (2020)
Interview with Le Soir (2020)
“Back to Basics: Theses on and Observations about the Struggle in France” (2020)
“For a Self-Managing Republic that Annuls the Republic of Parliaments and Businesses” (2020)
“To live and do away with the scorn for life” (2021)
“On the death of Marc Tomsin” (2021)
“Only Fear Governs Us: From the Programmed Degradation of the Living to its Spontaneous Rebirth” (2022)
Resistance to Christianity: A Chronological Encyclopaedia of Heresy from the Beginning to the Eighteenth Century (French 1993; English translation 2023)

To Contact NOT BORED: