FRANKIN, André. Personne et les autres (1960). Ed. Francois Coadou and Frederic Thomas. Toulon, La Nerthe, March 2023. 116 pages.
We are excited to announce the publication of a previously unreleased text by A. Frankin, one of the most obscure figure of the Situationist movement.
About Andre Frankin.
“André Frankin is not well-known and his impact on the lettrist and situationist movements are hard to measure” states scholar Jean-Marie Apostolides. André Frankin (also know “Robert Rivier” and “Léonard Rankine”) was born on 16 June 1925 in Liege, Belgium and died in the same city on 28 March 1990. Born into a middle class family, he suffered from neurological issues as a child that left him partially disabled – he walked and, at times, spoke with difficulty. Yet, he was viewed as intelligent and well-read. He first met Debord and the Internationale Lettriste through the Metagraphies exhibition in Paris in 1954. He then wrote several articles in Potlatch under the pseudonym “Leonard Rankine”, including “Perspectives of the Paris and London agreements” (Potlatch 15, December 1954). His contributions to the SI include: “Platform for a cultural Revolution” (Internationale Situationniste 3, December 1959), “Programmatic Outlines” (Internationale Situationniste 4, June 1960), and “Preface to the Scenic Unity” (Internationale Situationniste 5, December 1960).
For more texts by Frankin that we have located, see here (“Wilhelm Reich et l’economie sexuelle” in Arguments 18, 1960; and Le parti, le quotidien, in Arguments 25-26, 1962).
About Personne et les autres
From the editor (translation is ours):
The only play written by one of the members of the Situationist International (SI) – André Frankin (1925-1990) from Liège – Personne et les autres (1960) seemed irretrievably lost. We only knew about the play’s introduction, which was published in December 1960 in issue #5 of the Internationale Situationniste, and from a few mentions in the correspondence of Guy Debord. This was all the more regrettable since the play opened up, in Debord’s words, a new domain “for the Situationist scandal”, and because Situationist thoughts has since had a great influence on contemporary theater and performance. .
In 2015, the artist Vincent Meessen borrowed from Frankin’s book in choosing title of the group exhibition he organized for the Belgian Pavilion, during the 56th Venice Biennale. It was also discussed, in 2017, during the symposium The Situationist International and Contemporary Performance, organized at the Théâtre des Amandiers and the Théâtre de l’Échangeur.
Raoul Vaneigem recently found the typescript of Personne et les autres in his archives, and was kind enough to entrust it to us for publication