I write stuff.
My homepage is http://www.ericrosenfield.com
ericrosenfield asked: Read some Debord. Especially in stuff like "Report on the Construction of Situations" he's very dismissive of popular culture in general and television in specific, and indicates Situationism was intended to destroy bourgeois culture and its "escape from the real conditions of life and creation". How do you reconcile with your use of Situationist ideas to analyze a TV show the Situationists would have probably thought of as bourgeois pablum?
Because while the Situationists came gloriously close to overthrowing the structure of the world, or at least, of France, they failed. It didn’t work. And being a Situationist is thus impossible today, at least in the fully worked sense. (Indeed, it was rough at the time, given the Situationists’ fondness for ousting people from their number) All that’s left is to appropriate Situationist ideas for new contexts - contexts that would necessarily upset the Situationists proper were they still around to raise objections.
For my part at least the opportunity for escape and reparation comes in a large part from the acceptance that we are in a fallen, ideologically capitalist world and the acceptance of the fact that this cannot be denied or avoided. This, for me, is the great promise of détournement - the fact that it accepts the precondition of bourgeois culture.
The goal is still to escape. But you can’t escape without engaging with the walls of your cell.
The Doctor is someone you can send into a society completely unarmed with the expectation that he can, with nothing but his wits, bring the whole civilization crashing down in a matter of days. This is exactly what happens in Genesis of the Daleks: the Doctor is deployed like a weapon of mass destruction. It’s a stunning idea, one that reminds me of Vladimir Lenin being sent to Russia on a sealed train for the express purpose of overthrowing the government by powers at war with that government.