Michèle Bernstein

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Guy Debord, Michèle Bernstein and Asger Jorn (L-R), 1960.

Michèle Bernstein (28 April 1932, Paris) is a French novelist, critic, a founding member of the Situationist International and one of its influential thinkers. She was also part of the Lettrist International and married fellow member Guy Debord in 1954.

Bernstein was a contributor to Potlatch, the bulletin of the Lettrist International, the journal Internationale Situationniste and published two détourned novels in the early 1960s. She resigned from the Situationist International in 1967.

Bernstein divorced Debord in 1972 and moved to England where she became the companion of Ralph Rumney. For a few years, starting in 1982, she held a literary column in Libération.



  • Tous les chevaux du roi, Paris: Buchet-Chastel, 1960; repr., Paris: Allia, 2004, 128 pp. Novel. [1] (French)
  • La Nuit, Paris: Buchet-Chastel, 1961; repr., Paris: Allia, 2013, 160 pp. Novel. [3]. Reviews: Not Bored! (en), Chroniques critiques. (French)
    • The Night, trans. Clodagh Kinsella, ed. Everyone Agrees, London: Book Works, 2013. [4]. Reviews: Home (ArtReview), Reed (Lemon Hound). (English)




  • Odile Passot, "Portrait of Guy Debord as a Young Libertine", trans. Paul Lafarge, SubStance, 90, 1999, pp 71-88. Analyses two Bernstein's novels as 'autofictions'. (English)
    • "Porträt von Guy Debord als junger Libertin", in Das große Spiel. Die Situationisten zwischen Politik und Kunst, ed. Roberto Orth, Hamburg: Nautilus, 2000, pp 27-60. (German)
  • Bernadette Corporation, Reena Spaulings, Los Angeles: Semiotext(e), 2004. Inspired by Bernstein's Tous les chevaux du roi. (English)
  • Everyone Agrees, After the Night, London: Book Works, 2013. Homage to Bernstein's La Nuit. [5]. Reviews: Home (ArtReview), Reed (Lemon Hound). (English)
  • Ella Mudie, "‘They Were Jokes’: The Situationist Fiction of Michèle Bernstein", Journal of European Popular Culture 6:2, Oct 2015, pp 87-101. (English)