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Surrealism Against The Current: Tracts and Declarations

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Overview

Bringing together many Surrealist texts that have never previously been available in English, this collection is an essential guide for anyone who wishes to understand the Surrealist movement. Including a wealth of original works, it traces its development in the words of the Surrealists themselves, offering a definitive expression of Surrealism as a collective movement. It shows the extent of Surrealist positions and interests and provides evidence for the fact that, having become a major cultural phenomenon of the twentieth century, the issues it has raised remain central to current debates. Covering the period 1922-91, these key texts illuminate its philosophical, political and ethical positions and locate Surrealism in a broader social and cultural context. At a time of growing interest in Surrealism, the book also highlights the continued relevance of the Surrealists to current issues in social theory, in particular concerning the role of the artist in contemporary society. Comprising statements from Surrealist groups in Paris, Belgium, Romania, Sweden and Czechoslovakia, and signed by the major participants in the movement, it reveals the international dimension of Surrealism and shows how it has maintained vitality in response to changing social and political exigencies. Chapters cover the historical orientation of Surrealism; its involvement with revolutionary politics; its ethical concerns and its defense of the 'security of the spirit'; and its position on colonialism. In particular, the volume brings attention to the extent to which Surrealism represented a 'collective adventure' in which their shared interests brought together groups of individuals to explore themes in common. In this sense, Surrealism truly represented, as Andre Masson once described it, a 'collective experience of individualism'.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780745317793
  • Publisher: Pluto Press
  • Publication date: 9/20/2001
  • Pages: 232
  • Product dimensions: 5.48 (w) x 8.79 (h) x 0.83 (d)

Meet the Author

Michael Richardson lectures in cultural theory and social anthropology at the School of Oriental & African Studies, University of London. He edited and translated with Krzysztof Fijalkowski Refusal of the Shadow: Surrealism and the Caribbean (Verso, 1996) and more recently Georges Bataille: Essential Writings (Sage Publications, 1998).Krzysztof Fijatkowski is a lecturer in visual culture and art history at Norwich School of Art and Design and the University of East Anglia. He is also an occasional exhibition curator, artist and guitarist.

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgements
Introduction: Surrealism as a Collective Adventure
Note on the selection of texts
1 Historical Orientation of Surrealism
2 Surrealism Vis-a-vis Revolutionary Politics
3 The Security of the Spirit
4 Declarations on Colonialism
Appendices
Bibliography
Index
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