Ken Knabb

1945 — ?

Entry 4206


From: holdoffhunger [id: 1]


Untitled People Ken Knabb

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About Ken Knabb

Ken Knabb (born 1945) is an American writer, translator, and radical theorist,[1] known for his translations of Guy Debord and the Situationist International. His own English-language writings, many of which were anthologized in Public Secrets (1997), have been translated into over a dozen additional languages.[2] He is also a respected authority on the political significance of Kenneth Rexroth.[3]

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Part 1 (1945–1969) “If the world reproaches me for talking too much about myself, I reproach the world for not even thinking about itself.” — Montaigne Childhood I was born in 1945 in Louisiana, where my mother had gone to be with my father at an army camp. While he was overseas we lived on her parents’ farm in Minnesota. When he returned a couple years later, we moved to his home town in the Missouri Ozarks. Moving at a somewhat slower pace than most of the country, Plainstown still maintained much of that small-town, early-twentieth-century, pre-television American life idealized by Norman Rockwell — the world of porch swings and lazy afternoons, Boy Scouts and vac... (From:
Chapter 4: In the Central Prison As though we had a silent rendezvous, every morning I was one of the prisoners who pressed their faces against the bars overlooking the small yard of the women’s quarters as the female prisoners emerged, two by two, carrying out the waste pails. Among them were Chi Nguyet, a tall slim silhouette, her face a pale full moon, and her companion, the delicate-featured Chi Day. Both of them would throw us quick, radiant glances, and every morning they smiled at us. Innocent paradis plein de plaisirs furtifs ... [Innocent paradise full of furtive pleasures].[41] Nguyen Trung Nguyet, whom we called “Chi” (sister and comrade), was 29 years old. She was the longest held of the female prisoners, h... (From:
Chapter 1: Some Facts of Life “We can comprehend this world only by contesting it as a whole... The root of the prevailing lack of imagination cannot be grasped unless one is able to imagine what is lacking, that is, what is missing, hidden, forbidden, and yet possible, in modern life.” — Situationist International [1] Utopia or bust Never in history has there been such a glaring contrast between what could be and what actually exists. It’s hardly necessary to go into all the problems in the world today — most of them are widely known, and to dwell on them usually does little more than dull us to their reality. But even if we are “stoic enough to endure the misfortun... (From:
In “The Joy of Revolution” (1997) I devoted a brief section to criticizing some current technophobic and primitivist notions, because it seemed to me that these notions were becoming so widespread and so delirious that they were obscuring more serious radical possibilities. This text aroused a number of hostile reactions, from John Zerzan and Fifth Estate among others. Further debate was stirred up when an anarcho-primitivist named John Filiss posted the text on his Internet “Anarchy Board,” interspersed with his own comments. Another anarchist signing himself “Raycun” made some pertinent criticisms of Filiss’s comments. When Raycun persisted in challenging Filiss’s illogicalities and evasions... (From:
Revolution and Counterrevolution in Modern Culture First of all, we think the world must be changed. We want the most liberating change of the society and life in which we find ourselves confined. We know that such a change is possible through appropriate actions. Our specific concern is the use of certain means of action and the discovery of new ones, means which are more easily recognizable in the domain of culture and customs, but which must be applied in interrelation with all revolutionary changes. A society’s “culture” both reflects and prefigures its possible ways of organizing life. Our era is characterized by the lagging of revolutionary political action behind the development of modern possib... (From:
Every reasonably aware person of our time is aware of the obvious fact that art can no longer be justified as a superior activity, or even as a compensatory activity to which one might honorably devote oneself. The reason for this deterioration is clearly the emergence of productive forces that necessitate other production relations and a new practice of life. In the civil-war phase we are engaged in, and in close connection with the orientation we are discovering for certain superior activities to come, we believe that all known means of expression are going to converge in a general movement of propaganda that must encompass all the perpetually interacting aspects of social reality. There are several conflicting opinions about the f... (From:

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