Nicholas Thoburn: Anti-Book: On the Art and Politics of Radical Publishing (2014–) [EN, SC]

25 January 2017, dusan

“No, Anti-Book is not a book about books. Not exactly. And yet it is a must for anyone interested in the future of the book. Presenting what he terms “a communism of textual matter,” Nicholas Thoburn explores the encounter between political thought and experimental writing and publishing, shifting the politics of text from an exclusive concern with content and meaning to the media forms and social relations by which text is produced and consumed. Taking a “post-digital” approach in considering a wide array of textual media forms, Thoburn invites us to challenge the commodity form of books—to stop imagining books as transcendent intellectual, moral, and aesthetic goods unsullied by commerce. His critique is, instead, one immersed in the many materialities of text.

Anti-Book engages with an array of writing and publishing projects, including Antonin Artaud’s paper gris-gris, Valerie Solanas’s SCUM Manifesto, Guy Debord’s sandpaper-bound Mémoires, the collective novelist Wu Ming, and the digital/print hybrid of Mute magazine. Empirically grounded, it is also a major achievement in expressing a political philosophy of writing and publishing, where the materiality of text is interlaced with conceptual production. Each chapter investigates a different form of textual media in concert with a particular concept: the small-press pamphlet as “communist object,” the magazine as “diagrammatic publishing,” political books in the modes of “root” and “rhizome,” the “multiple single” of anonymous authorship, and myth as “unidentified narrative object.””

Publisher University of Minnesota Press, 2016
Cultural Critique Books series
ISBN 9780816621965, 0816621969
xvi+372 pages

Publisher (EN)
Publisher (SC)
WorldCat (EN)

Anti-knjiga: Materijalni tekst i političko izdavaštvo (Serbo-Croatian, 2014, 1 MB, added on 2017-5-2)
Anti-Book: On the Art and Politics of Radical Publishing (English, 2016, 5 MB)

Guy Debord, Asger Jorn: Mémoires (1958–) [French, English]

29 August 2015, dusan

Mémoires [Memories] is an artist’s book made by Asger Jorn in collaboration with Guy Debord. Published in December 1958, it is the second of their two collaborative books whilst they were both members of the Situationist International. Second issue of the same book, in slightly different format, appeared in Copenhagen in 1959.

“The pages consist of phrases, photos, drawings and cartoons that Debord cut out of other works, and then pasted up in a randomly suggestive manner. Debord then had Jorn taint these ‘prefabricated elements’ with paint. The colors suggest possible readings of the phrases or simply lend a mood to the images. These plates were then bound in sand-paper to destroy any other books it came into contact with–Debord calls them an anti-book. The book was published at Jorn’s expense and given away as a sumptuous gift to friends.” (adapted from L. Bracken, Guy Debord, 1997, pp 34-35)

Publisher L’Internationale situationniste, 1958
[64] pages

Books of Warfare: The Collaboration between Guy Debord & Asger Jorn from 1957-1959 (Christian Nolle, 2005)
The Making of Fin de Copenhagen & Mémoires (Bart Lans, 2008)
En ukendt og berygtet celebrity? Guy Debord, potlatch og myten om Mémoires (Thomas Hvid Kromann, 2016, Danish)

English translator
Footnotes and sources of detournements (compiled by Ian Thompson, 2015)

Mémoires (French, 2nd ed., Copenhagen, 1959, 254 MB, added on 2017-10-7 via Beinecke Rare Book & Manuscript Library)
Mémoires (French, 1993 reprint by Jean-Jacques Pauvert aux Belles Lettres of 1959 Copenhagen edition, low res PDF, 2 MB, via AVANT)
Mémoires (English, facsimile trans. Ian Thompson, 2015, PDF, 16 MB)

See also Fin de Copenhague, 1957.