Raoul Vaneigem

Raoul Vaneigem was born in 1934 in Lessines, a small worker’s town of Hainault in Belgium. He obtained a degree in Romance Philology with a thesis on Isidore Ducasse et le Comte de Lautréamont dans les Poesies (Isidore Ducasse and the Count of Lautréamont in the Poems). He was friend of Belgian writer and surrealist poet Louis Scutenaire and great amateur of Belgian beers. Vaneigem began his contacts with the Situationist International in 1961 through Henry Lefebvre, dissident communist and professor in Nanterre University of Paris. His relationship with Guy Debord marked the last ten years of situationist experiences. Firstly, due to the theoretical complicity between them (The Society of Spectacle by Debord and The Revolution of Everyday Life by Vaneigem were both published in 1967 and gave equally an important contribution to the radical explosion of May '68) and secondly, due to their break without concessions after May '68 (1970), when the Situationist International lost its catalyst role in radical theory. The following of his personal history shows a theoretical-practical coherence between his love for life and a radical consciousness, always careful of the evolution of dominant systems and of the quality of his criticism.