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This article is about the psychogeographical concept. For articles related to the English translation of this word, see Drift (disambiguation).
A 2004 poster announcing a large-scale dérive in London, led by a psychogeographical society

In psychogeography, a dérive (French: [/de.ʁiv/], "drift") is an unplanned journey through a landscape, usually urban, on which the subtle aesthetic contours of the surrounding architecture and geography subconsciously direct the travellers, with the ultimate goal of encountering an entirely new and authentic experience. Situationist theorist Guy Debord defines the dérive as "a mode of experimental behavior linked to the conditions of urban society: a technique of rapid passage through varied ambiances." He also notes that "the term also designates a specific uninterrupted period of dériving."[1]

History[edit]

The concept of the dérive has its origins in the Letterist International of the 1940s, an artistic and political collective based in Paris, where it was a critical tool for understanding and developing the theory of psychogeography, defined as the "specific effects of the geographical environment (whether consciously organized or not) on the emotions and behavior of individuals."[1] The dérive, an unplanned tour through an urban landscape directed entirely by the feelings evoked in the individual by their surroundings, served as the primary means for mapping and investigating the psychogeography of these different areas.

The dérive continued to be a critical concept in the theories of the Situationist International, a radical group of avant-garde artists and political theorists that succeeded the Letterist International in the 1950s. For the situationists, the dérive was a technique for exploring an urban landscape's psychogeography and engaging in new experiences. According to situationist theorist Guy Debord, in performing a dérive, the individual in question must first set aside all work and leisure activities, clearing their minds of all their usual motives for movement and action, then let themselves be drawn by the attractions of the terrain and the encounters they find there.

Dérives are necessary, according to situationist theory, because of the increasingly predictable and monotonous experience of everyday life in advanced capitalism.[2] The dérive grants a rare instance of pure chance, an opportunity for an utterly new and authentic experience of the different atmospheres and feelings generated by the urban landscape.[2] Debord observes in his Introduction to a Critique of Urban Geography:

The sudden change of ambiance in a street within the space of a few meters; the evident division of a city into zones of distinct psychic atmospheres; the path of least resistance that is automatically followed in aimless strolls (and which has no relation to the physical contour of the terrain); the appealing or repelling character of certain places — these phenomena all seem to be neglected. In any case they are never envisaged as depending on causes that can be uncovered by careful analysis and turned to account.

—Guy Debord, Introduction to a Critique of Urban Geography[3]

Several groups have adopted the concept of the dérive and applied it in their own form, including many modern organizations, most notably the London Psychogeographical Association, Wrights and Sites (notably the mis-guided drifts of mythogeographer Phil Smith) and the Providence Initiative for Psychogeographic Studies. Since 2003 in the United States, separate events known as Provflux and Psy-Geo-conflux have been dedicated to action-based participatory experiments similar to the dérive, within the context of psychogeography.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Guy Debord (1958) Definitions. Internationale Situationniste #1 (Paris, June 1958). Translated by Ken Knabb.
  2. ^ a b Guy Debord (1956) Theory of the Dérive. Les Lèvres Nues #9 (Paris, November 1956). Reprinted in Internationale Situationniste #2 (Paris, December 1958). Translated by Ken Knabb.
  3. ^ Guy Debord (1955) Introduction to a Critique of Urban Geography. Les Lèvres Nues #6 (Paris, September 1955). Translated by Ken Knabb.

External links[edit]


Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dérive — Please support Wikipedia.
This page uses Creative Commons Licensed content from Wikipedia. A portion of the proceeds from advertising on Digplanet goes to supporting Wikipedia.

74877 news items

Les Échos

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Mon, 27 Jul 2015 02:16:31 -0700

Les publications sur les entreprises libérées pullulent dans un contexte de réorganisation managériale des entreprises. Le point sur les dérives et confusions. Il aura suffi d'un article de François Geuze « Entreprise libérée, entre imposture et ...

LaPresse.ca

LaPresse.ca
Sun, 26 Jul 2015 02:00:00 -0700

Bien sûr, nous sommes bien loin d'un dénouement dans ce feuilleton de l'été. Sauf que la crise grecque est le symbole d'un clivage de plus en plus grand au sein de l'Union européenne. Certains commentateurs reprochent aux Grecs leur laxisme. Pourtant ...

Le Monde

Le Monde
Thu, 23 Jul 2015 05:22:30 -0700

Ils travaillent pour les plus grandes universités du monde et sont inquiets à la fois de la répression en cours en Angola et de l'affairisme des gouvernements occidentaux, notamment français, qui vont signer des contrats à Luanda sans parler de droits ...

Toulouse Infos

Toulouse Infos
Mon, 27 Jul 2015 09:18:45 -0700

Etudiante en master de sciences politiques à l'université de droit et dotée d'une imagination débordante la jeune femme a écrit son premier recueil les Contes à la dérive, édité chez Amalthée. C'est en sixième, lorsque sa prof de français fait écrire ...

The Guardian

The Guardian
Mon, 27 Jul 2015 08:33:36 -0700

The first, given with consummate expertise by Birmingham Contemporary Music Group and conductor Franck Ollu, ended with the teeming, furiously tangled ensemble writing of Boulez's most substantial recent work, Dérive 2, which reached its current ...

Agence Science-Presse

Agence Science-Presse
Mon, 20 Jul 2015 11:29:26 -0700

Homéopathie : une revue savante et l'Université de Toronto à la dérive. Bruno Geoffroy, le 20 juillet 2015, 14h30. (Agence Science-Presse) À coups de granules, l'homéopathie s'infiltre dans nos vies. Discrètement, elle cherche la respectabilité. Dans ...

Libération

Libération
Thu, 23 Jul 2015 08:47:06 -0700

«Un pays qui ne défend pas ses intérêts n'est pas pris au sérieux quand il invoque ses valeurs» Telle est la formule choc utilisée, lors d'une interview à Libération, par Hubert Védrine, qui, affichant une nouvelle fois son mépris des «postures droits ...

Radio-Canada

Radio-Canada
Sat, 04 Jul 2015 16:00:01 -0700

Exclusif - Le nombre de wagons ou de locomotives à la dérive signalés par les compagnies ferroviaires au Bureau de la sécurité des transports (BST) a augmenté depuis le drame de Lac-Mégantic, selon les données compilées par Radio-Canada.
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