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The Pale King

By David Foster Wallace
  • ISBN Code: : 9780316175296
  • Publisher : Little, Brown
  • Pages : 592
  • Category : Fiction
  • Reads : 324
  • Book Compatibility : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Pdf : the-pale-king.pdf

Book Excerpt :

The agents at the IRS Regional Examination Center in Peoria, Illinois, appear ordinary enough to newly arrived trainee David Foster Wallace. But as he immerses himself in a routine so tedious and repetitive that new employees receive boredom-survival training, he learns of the extraordinary variety of personalities drawn to this strange calling. And he has arrived at a moment when forces within the IRS are plotting to eliminate even what little humanity and dignity the work still has. The Pale King remained unfinished at the time of David Foster Wallace's death, but it is a deeply compelling and satisfying novel, hilarious and fearless and as original as anything Wallace ever undertook. It grapples directly with ultimate questions--questions of life's meaning and of the value of work and society--through characters imagined with the interior force and generosity that were Wallace's unique gifts. Along the way it suggests a new idea of heroism and commands infinite respect for one of the most daring writers of our time.

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Read Also This Books

David Foster Wallace and the Body

By Peter Sloane
  • File : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Routledge
  • Book Code : 100000869X
  • Total of Pages : 204
  • Category : Literary Criticism
  • Members : 368
  • Pdf File: david-foster-wallace-and-the-body.pdf

Book Short Summary:

David Foster Wallace and the Body is the first full-length study to focus on Wallace’s career-long fascination with the human body and the textual representation of the body. The book provides engaging, accessible close readings that highlight the importance of the overlooked, and yet central theme of all of this major American author’s works: having a body. Wallace repeatedly made clear that good fiction is about what it means to be a ‘human being’. A large part of what that means is having a body, and being conscious of the conflicts that arise, morally and physically, as a result; a fact with which, as Wallace forcefully and convincingly argues, we all desire ‘to be reconciled’. Given the ubiquity of the themes of embodiment in Wallace’s work, this study is an important addition to an expanding field. The book also opens up the themes addressed to interrogate aspects of contemporary literature, culture, and society more generally, placing Wallace’s works in the history of literary and philosophical engagements with the brute fact of embodiment.

Wallace’s Dialects

By Mary Shapiro
  • File : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Bloomsbury Publishing USA
  • Book Code : 1501348485
  • Total of Pages : 240
  • Category : Literary Criticism
  • Members : 150
  • Pdf File: wallace-s-dialects.pdf

Book Short Summary:

Mary Shapiro explores the use of regional and ethnic dialects in the works of David Foster Wallace, not just as a device used to add realism to dialogue, but as a vehicle for important social commentary about the role language plays in our daily lives, how we express personal identity, and how we navigate social relationships. Wallace's Dialects straddles the fields of linguistic criticism and folk linguistics, considering which linguistic variables of Jewish-American English, African-American English, Midwestern, Southern, and Boston regional dialects were salient enough for Wallace to represent, and how he showed the intersectionality of these with gender and social class. Wallace's own use of language is examined with respect to how it encodes his identity as a white, male, economically privileged Midwesterner, while also foregrounding characteristic and distinctive idiolect features that allowed him to connect to readers across implied social boundaries.

Brief Interviews with Hideous Men

By David Foster Wallace
  • File : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Little, Brown
  • Book Code : 0316086894
  • Total of Pages : 336
  • Category : Fiction
  • Members : 959
  • Pdf File: brief-interviews-with-hideous-men.pdf

Book Short Summary:

In this thought-provoking and playful short story collection, David Foster Wallace nudges at the boundaries of fiction with inimitable wit and seductive intelligence. Wallace's stories present a world where the bizarre and the banal are interwoven and where hideous men appear in many guises. Among the stories are 'The Depressed Person,' a dazzling and blackly humorous portrayal of a woman's mental state; 'Adult World,' which reveals a woman's agonized consideration of her confusing sexual relationship with her husband; and 'Brief Interviews with Hideous Men,' a dark, hilarious series of imagined interviews with men on the subject of their relations with women. Wallace delights in leftfield observation, mining the absurd, the surprising, and the illuminating from every situation. This collection will enthrall DFW fans, and provides a perfect introduction for new readers.

Wallace and I

By Jamie Redgate
  • File : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Routledge
  • Book Code : 0429594666
  • Total of Pages : 176
  • Category : Literary Criticism
  • Members : 984
  • Pdf File: wallace-and-i.pdf

Book Short Summary:

Though David Foster Wallace is well known for declaring that "Fiction’s about what it is to be a fucking human being," what he actually meant by the term "human being" has been quite forgotten. It is a truism in Wallace studies that Wallace was a posthumanist writer, and too theoretically sophisticated to write about characters as having some kind of essential interior self or soul. Though the contemporary, posthuman model of the embodied brain is central to Wallace’s work, so is his critique of that model: the soul is as vital a part of Wallace’s fiction as the bodies in which his souls are housed. Drawing on Wallace’s reading in the science and philosophy of mind, this book gives a rigorous account of Wallace’s dualism, and of his humanistic engagement with key postmodern concerns: authorship; the self and interiority; madness and mind doctors; and free will. If Wallace’s fiction is about what it is to be a human being, this book is about the human ‘I’ at the heart of Wallace’s work.

Work: The Labors of Language, Culture, and History in North America

By J. Jesse Ramírez,Sixta Quassdorf
  • File : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Narr Francke Attempto Verlag
  • Book Code : 3823395025
  • Total of Pages : 213
  • Category : Literary Criticism
  • Members : 676
  • Pdf File: work.pdf

Book Short Summary:

Like all fundamental categories, work becomes ever more complex as we examine it more closely. The terms "work," "labor," "job," "employment," "occupation," "profession," "vocation," "task," "toil," "effort," "pursuit," and "calling" form a dense web of overlapping and contrasting meanings. Moreover, the analysis of work must contend with how histories of class struggle, gendered and sexual divisions of labor, racial hierarchies, and citizenship regimes have determined who counts as a worker and qualifies for the rights, protections, and social respect thereof. And yet waged work is only the tip of an enormous iceberg that feminist theorists call "socially reproductive labor"—the gendered, mostly unpaid, and hidden work of caring for, feeding, nursing, and teaching the next generation of workers. This collection of essays explores the richness of work as a linguistic, cultural, and historical concept and the conjunctures that are changing work and its worlds.

New Media and the Transformation of Postmodern American Literature

By Casey Michael Henry
  • File : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Bloomsbury Publishing
  • Book Code : 135006498X
  • Total of Pages : 216
  • Category : Literary Criticism
  • Members : 175
  • Pdf File: new-media-and-the-transformation-of-postmodern-american-literature.pdf

Book Short Summary:

How has American literature after postmodernism responded to the digital age? Drawing on insights from contemporary media theory, this is the first book to explore the explosion of new media technologies as an animating context for contemporary American literature. Casey Michael Henry examines the intertwining histories of new media forms since the 1970s and literary postmodernism and its aftermath, from William Gaddis's J R and Bret Easton Ellis's American Psycho through to David Foster Wallace's Infinite Jest. Through these histories, the book charts the ways in which print-based postmodern writing at first resisted new mass media forms and ultimately came to respond to them.

Authorship’s Wake

By Philip Sayers
  • File : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Bloomsbury Publishing USA
  • Book Code : 1501367684
  • Total of Pages : 224
  • Category : Literary Criticism
  • Members : 588
  • Pdf File: authorship-s-wake.pdf

Book Short Summary:

Authorship's Wake examines the aftermath of the 1960s critique of the author, epitomized by Roland Barthes's essay, “The Death of the Author.” This critique has given rise to a body of writing that confounds generic distinctions separating the literary and the theoretical. Its archive consists of texts by writers who either directly participated in this critique, as Barthes did, or whose intellectual formation took place in its immediate aftermath. These writers include some who are known primarily as theorists (Judith Butler), others known primarily as novelists (Zadie Smith, David Foster Wallace), and yet others whose texts are difficult to categorize (the autofiction of Chris Kraus, Sheila Heti, and Ben Lerner; the autotheory of Maggie Nelson). These writers share not only a central motivating question – how to move beyond the critique of the author-subject – but also a way of answering it: by writing texts that merge theoretical concerns with literary discourse. Authorship's Wake traces the responses their work offers in relation to four themes: communication, intention, agency, and labor.

Conversations with David Foster Wallace

By Stephen Burn
  • File : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Univ. Press of Mississippi
  • Book Code : 1617032271
  • Total of Pages : 186
  • Category : Biography & Autobiography
  • Members : 914
  • Pdf File: conversations-with-david-foster-wallace.pdf

Book Short Summary:

Collection of interviews that profiles Wallace's career of twenty years, from 1987 until his suicide in 2008, that provides insight into his development as a writer and complicated persona.

The Moral Worlds of Contemporary Realism

By Mary K. Holland
  • File : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Bloomsbury Publishing USA
  • Book Code : 1501362631
  • Total of Pages : 312
  • Category : Literary Criticism
  • Members : 155
  • Pdf File: the-moral-worlds-of-contemporary-realism.pdf

Book Short Summary:

Literature has never looked weirder--full of images, colors, gadgets, and footnotes, and violating established norms of character, plot, and narrative structure. Yet over the last 30 years, critics have coined more than 20 new “realisms” in their attempts to describe it. What makes this decidedly unorthodox literature “realistic”? And if it is, then what does “realism” mean anymore? Examining literature by dozens of writers, and over a century of theory and criticism about realism, The Moral Worlds of Contemporary Realism sorts through the current critical confusion to illustrate how our ideas about what is real and how best to depict it have changed dramatically, especially in recent years. Along the way, Mary K. Holland guides the reader on a lively tour through the landscape of contemporary literary studies--taking in metafiction, ideology, posthumanism, postmodernism, and poststructuralism--with forays into quantum mechanics, new materialism, and Buddhism as well, to give us entirely new ways of viewing how humans use language to make sense of--and to make--the world.

David Foster Wallace's Infinite Jest

By Stephen J. Burn
  • File : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Bloomsbury Publishing USA
  • Book Code : 1441186328
  • Total of Pages : 144
  • Category : Literary Criticism
  • Members : 988
  • Pdf File: david-foster-wallace-s-infinite-jest.pdf

Book Short Summary:

Infinite Jest has been hailed as one the great modern American novels and its author, David Foster Wallace, who committed suicide in 2008, as one of the most influential and innovative authors of the past 20 years. Don DeLillo called Infinite Jest a "three-stage rocket to the future," a work "equal to the huge, babbling spin-out sweep of contemporary life," while Time Magazine included Infinite Jest on its list of 100 Greatest Novels published between 1923-2006. David Foster Wallace's Infinite Jest: A Reader's Guide was the first book to be published on the novel and is a key reference for those who wish to explore further. Infinite Jest has become an exemplar for difficulty in contemporary Fiction-its 1,079 pages full of verbal invention, oblique narration, and a scattered, nonlinear, chronology. In this comprehensively revised second edition, Burn maps Wallace's influence on contemporary American fiction, outlines Wallace's poetics, and provides a full-length study of the novel, drawing out the most important themes and ideas, before surveying Wallace's post-Infinite Jest output, including The Pale King.

The Unspeakable Failures of David Foster Wallace

By Clare Hayes-Brady
  • File : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Bloomsbury Publishing USA
  • Book Code : 1501313533
  • Total of Pages : 208
  • Category : Literary Criticism
  • Members : 619
  • Pdf File: the-unspeakable-failures-of-david-foster-wallace.pdf

Book Short Summary:

This book examines the writing of David Foster Wallace, hailed as the voice of a generation on his death. Critics have identified horror of solipsism, obsession with sincerity and a corresponding ambivalence regarding postmodern irony, and detailed attention to contemporary culture as the central elements of Wallace's writing. Clare Hayes-Brady draws on the evolving discourses of Wallace studies, focusing on the unifying anti-teleology of his writing, arguing that that position is a fundamentally political response to the condition of neo-liberal America. She argues that Wallace's work is most unified by its resistance to closure, which pervades the structural, narrative and stylistic elements of his writing. Taking a broadly thematic approach to the numerous types of 'failure', or lack of completion, visible throughout his work, the book offers a framework within which to read Wallace's work as a coherent whole, rather than split along the lines of fiction versus non-fiction, or pre- and post-Infinite Jest, two critical positions that have become dominant over the last five years. While demonstrating the centrality of 'failure', the book also explores Wallace's approach to sincere communication as a recurring response to what he saw as the inane, self-absorbed commodification of language and society, along with less explored themes such as gender, naming and heroism. Situating Wallace as both a product of his time and an artist sui generis, Hayes-Brady details his abiding interest in philosophy, language and the struggle for an authentic self in late-twentieth-century America.

This Is Water

By David Foster Wallace
  • File : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Little, Brown
  • Book Code : 0316071005
  • Total of Pages : 144
  • Category : Self-Help
  • Members : 694
  • Pdf File: this-is-water.pdf

Book Short Summary:

In this rare peak into the personal life of the author of numerous bestselling novels, gain an understanding of David Foster Wallace and how he became the man that he was. Only once did David Foster Wallace give a public talk on his views on life, during a commencement address given in 2005 at Kenyon College. The speech is reprinted for the first time in book form in This is Water. How does one keep from going through their comfortable, prosperous adult life unconsciously? How do we get ourselves out of the foreground of our thoughts and achieve compassion? The speech captures Wallace's electric intellect as well as his grace in attention to others. After his death, it became a treasured piece of writing reprinted in The Wall Street Journal and the London Times, commented on endlessly in blogs, and emailed from friend to friend. Writing with his one-of-a-kind blend of causal humor, exacting intellect, and practical philosophy, David Foster Wallace probes the challenges of daily living and offers advice that renews us with every reading.

A Supposedly Fun Thing I'll Never Do Again

By David Foster Wallace
  • File : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Back Bay Books
  • Book Code : 0316090522
  • Total of Pages : 368
  • Category : Humor
  • Members : 627
  • Pdf File: a-supposedly-fun-thing-i-ll-never-do-again.pdf

Book Short Summary:

In this exuberantly praised book - a collection of seven pieces on subjects ranging from television to tennis, from the Illinois State Fair to the films of David Lynch, from postmodern literary theory to the supposed fun of traveling aboard a Caribbean luxury cruiseliner - David Foster Wallace brings to nonfiction the same curiosity, hilarity, and exhilarating verbal facility that has delighted readers of his fiction, including the bestselling Infinite Jest.

Disappointment

By Michael Mack
  • File : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Bloomsbury Publishing USA
  • Book Code : 1501366890
  • Total of Pages : 296
  • Category : Literary Criticism
  • Members : 765
  • Pdf File: disappointment.pdf

Book Short Summary:

Considering the support behind Brexit and Donald Trump's 'America first' policies, this book challenges the idea that they are motivated solely by fear and instead looks at the hope and promises that drive these renewed forms of nationalism. Addressing these neglected motivations within contemporary populism, Michael Mack explores how our current sense of disappointment with our ecological, economic and political state of affairs partakes of a history of failed promises that goes back to the inception of modernity; namely, to Spinoza's radical enlightenment of diversity and equality. Through this innovative approach, Spinoza emerges less as a single isolated figure and more as a sign for an intellectual constellation of thinkers and writers who – from the romantics to contemporary theory and literature – have introduced various shifts in the way we see humanity as being limited and prone to disappointment. Combining intellectual history with literary and scientific theory, the book traces the collapse of traditional values and orders from Spinoza to Nietzsche and then to the literary modernism of Joseph Conrad and postmodernism of Philip Roth and Thomas Pynchon.

Although Of Course You End Up Becoming Yourself

By David Lipsky
  • File : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Crown
  • Book Code : 0307592448
  • Total of Pages : 352
  • Category : Biography & Autobiography
  • Members : 979
  • Pdf File: although-of-course-you-end-up-becoming-yourself.pdf

Book Short Summary:

NOW A MAJOR MOTION PICTURE, STARRING JASON SEGAL AND JESSE EISENBERG, DIRECTED BY JAMES PONSOLDT An indelible portrait of David Foster Wallace, by turns funny and inspiring, based on a five-day trip with award-winning writer David Lipsky during Wallace’s Infinite Jest tour In David Lipsky’s view, David Foster Wallace was the best young writer in America. Wallace’s pieces for Harper’s magazine in the ’90s were, according to Lipsky, “like hearing for the first time the brain voice of everybody I knew: Here was how we all talked, experienced, thought. It was like smelling the damp in the air, seeing the first flash from a storm a mile away. You knew something gigantic was coming.” Then Rolling Stone sent Lipsky to join Wallace on the last leg of his book tour for Infinite Jest, the novel that made him internationally famous. They lose to each other at chess. They get iced-in at an airport. They dash to Chicago to catch a make-up flight. They endure a terrible reader’s escort in Minneapolis. Wallace does a reading, a signing, an NPR appearance. Wallace gives in and imbibes titanic amounts of hotel television (what he calls an “orgy of spectation”). They fly back to Illinois, drive home, walk Wallace’s dogs. Amid these everyday events, Wallace tells Lipsky remarkable things—everything he can about his life, how he feels, what he thinks, what terrifies and fascinates and confounds him—in the writing voice Lipsky had come to love. Lipsky took notes, stopped envying him, and came to feel about him—that grateful, awake feeling—the same way he felt about Infinite Jest. Then Lipsky heads to the airport, and Wallace goes to a dance at a Baptist church. A biography in five days, Although Of Course You End Up Becoming Yourself is David Foster Wallace as few experienced this great American writer. Told in his own words, here is Wallace’s own story, and his astonishing, humane, alert way of looking at the world; here are stories of being a young writer—of being young generally—trying to knit together your ideas of who you should be and who other people expect you to be, and of being young in March of 1996. And of what it was like to be with and—as he tells it—what it was like to become David Foster Wallace. "If you can think of times in your life that you’ve treated people with extraordinary decency and love, and pure uninterested concern, just because they were valuable as human beings. The ability to do that with ourselves. To treat ourselves the way we would treat a really good, precious friend. Or a tiny child of ours that we absolutely loved more than life itself. And I think it’s probably possible to achieve that. I think part of the job we’re here for is to learn how to do it. I know that sounds a little pious." —David Foster Wallace

Postirony

By Lukas Hoffmann
  • File : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : transcript Verlag
  • Book Code : 3839436613
  • Total of Pages : 210
  • Category : Language Arts & Disciplines
  • Members : 825
  • Pdf File: postirony.pdf

Book Short Summary:

What is 'postirony'? Foremost, it is a response to the ironic zeitgeist. Moreover, it is the key to understanding a specific form of literature. The contemporary reader is familiar with and - unfortunately - used to postmodernism's ironic, self-reflexive metafiction. Authors like David Foster Wallace and Dave Eggers chose a different path: Despite the reign of contemporary irony, they strive to reach the reader on a level beyond, cognitively as well as emotionally - they claim to be sincere and true. Focusing largely on nonfiction by said authors, Lukas Hoffmann explores the means the texts use to achieve something new - namely, a new form of sincerity.

Every Love Story Is a Ghost Story

By D. T. Max
  • File : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Penguin
  • Book Code : 1101601116
  • Total of Pages : 368
  • Category : Biography & Autobiography
  • Members : 510
  • Pdf File: every-love-story-is-a-ghost-story.pdf

Book Short Summary:

The acclaimed New York Times–bestselling biography and “emotionally detailed portrait of the artist as a young man” (Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times) In the first biography of the iconic David Foster Wallace, D.T. Max paints the portrait of a man, self-conscious, obsessive and struggling to find meaning. If Wallace was right when he declared he was “frightfully and thoroughly conventional,” it is only because over the course of his short life and stunning career, he wrestled intimately and relentlessly with the fundamental anxiety of being human. In his characteristic lucid and quick-witted style, Max untangles Wallace’s anxious sense of self, his volatile and sometimes abusive connection with women, and above all, his fraught relationship with fiction as he emerges with his masterpiece Infinite Jest. Written with the cooperation of Wallace’s family and friends and with access to hundreds of unpublished letters, manuscripts and journals, this captivating biography unveils the life of the profoundly complicated man who gave voice to what we thought we could not say.

The Broom of the System

By David Foster Wallace
  • File : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Penguin
  • Book Code : 1101153539
  • Total of Pages : 480
  • Category : Fiction
  • Members : 337
  • Pdf File: the-broom-of-the-system.pdf

Book Short Summary:

Published when Wallace was just twenty-four years old, The Broom of the System stunned critics and marked the emergence of an extraordinary new talent. At the center of this outlandishly funny, fiercely intelligent novel is the bewitching heroine, Lenore Stonecipher Beadsman. The year is 1990 and the place is a slightly altered Cleveland, Ohio. Lenore’s great-grandmother has disappeared with twenty-five other inmates of the Shaker Heights Nursing Home. Her beau, and boss, Rick Vigorous, is insanely jealous, and her cockatiel, Vlad the Impaler, has suddenly started spouting a mixture of psycho-babble, Auden, and the King James Bible. Ingenious and entertaining, this debut from one of the most innovative writers of his generation brilliantly explores the paradoxes of language, storytelling, and reality.

The Fact of the Cage

By Karl A. Plank
  • File : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Routledge
  • Book Code : 1000338967
  • Total of Pages : 204
  • Category : Literary Criticism
  • Members : 403
  • Pdf File: the-fact-of-the-cage.pdf

Book Short Summary:

David Foster Wallace’s Infinite Jest raised expectations of what a novel might do. As he understood fiction to aim at what it means to be human, so he hoped his work might relieve the loneliness of human suffering. In that light, The Fact of the Cage shows how Wallace’s masterpiece dramatizes the condition of encagement and how it comes to be met by "Abiding" and through inter-relational acts of speaking and hearing, touching, and facing. Revealing Wallace’s theology of a "boneless Christ," The Fact of the Cage wagers that reading such a novel as Infinite Jest makes available to readers the redemption glimpsed in its pages, that reading fiction has ethical and religious significance—in short, that reading Infinite Jest makes one better. As such, Plank’s work takes steps to defend the ethics of fiction, the vital relation between religion and literature, and why one just might read at all.

David Foster Wallace and "The Long Thing"

By Marshall Boswell
  • File : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Bloomsbury Publishing USA
  • Book Code : 1628928913
  • Total of Pages : 256
  • Category : Literary Criticism
  • Members : 723
  • Pdf File: david-foster-wallace-and-the-long-thing.pdf

Book Short Summary:

Of the twelve books David Foster Wallace published both during his lifetime and posthumously, only three were novels. Nevertheless, Wallace always thought of himself primarily as a novelist. From his college years at Amherst, when he wrote his first novel as part of a creative honors thesis, to his final days, Wallace was buried in a novel project, which he often referred to as "the Long Thing." Meanwhile, the short stories and journalistic assignments he worked on during those years he characterized as "playing hooky from a certain Larger Thing." Wallace was also a specific kind of novelist, devoted to producing a specific kind of novel, namely the omnivorous, culture-consuming "encyclopedic" novel, as described in 1976 by Edward Mendelson in a ground-breaking essay on Thomas Pynchon's Gravity's Rainbow. David Foster Wallace and "The Long Thing" is a state-of-the art guide through Wallace's three major works, including the generation-defining Infinite Jest. These essays provide fresh new readings of each of Wallace's novels as well as thematic essays that trace out patterns and connections across the three works. Most importantly, the collection includes six chapters on Wallace's unfinished novel, The Pale King, which will prove to be foundational for future scholars of this important text.

Fate, Time, and Language

By David Foster Wallace
  • File : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Columbia University Press
  • Book Code : 0231527071
  • Total of Pages : 263
  • Category : Philosophy
  • Members : 847
  • Pdf File: fate-time-and-language.pdf

Book Short Summary:

The Pulitzer Prize finalist and author of The Pale King and Infinite Jest weighs in on a philosophical controversy in this fascinating early work. In 1962, the philosopher Richard Taylor used six commonly accepted presuppositions to imply that human beings have no control over the future. David Foster Wallace not only took issue with Taylor's method, which, according to him, scrambled the relations of logic, language, and the physical world, but also detected a semantic trick at the heart of Taylor's argument. Fate, Time, and Language presents Wallace's brilliant critique of Taylor's work. Written long before the publication of his fiction and essays, Wallace's thesis reveals his great skepticism of abstract thinking and any school of thought that abandons "the very old traditional human verities that have to do with spirituality and emotion and community." As Wallace rises to meet the challenge to free will presented by Taylor, we witness the developing perspective of this major novelist, along with his struggle to establish solid logical ground for his convictions. This volume, edited by Steven M. Cahn and Maureen Eckert, reproduces Taylor's original article and other works on fatalism cited by Wallace. James Ryerson's introduction connects Wallace's early philosophical work to the themes and explorations of his later fiction, and Jay Garfield supplies a critical biographical epilogue.

Oblivion

By David Foster Wallace
  • File : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Little, Brown
  • Book Code : 075951156X
  • Total of Pages : 336
  • Category : Fiction
  • Members : 439
  • Pdf File: oblivion.pdf

Book Short Summary:

In the stories that make up Oblivion, David Foster Wallace joins the rawest, most naked humanity with the infinite involutions of self-consciousness -- a combination that is dazzlingly, uniquely his. These are worlds undreamt of by any other mind. Only David Foster Wallace could convey a father's desperate loneliness by way of his son's daydreaming through a teacher's homicidal breakdown (The Soul Is Not a Smithy). Or could explore the deepest and most hilarious aspects of creativity by delineating the office politics surrounding a magazine profile of an artist who produces miniature sculptures in an anatomically inconceivable way (The Suffering Channel). Or capture the ache of love's breakdown in the painfully polite apologies of a man who believes his wife is hallucinating the sound of his snoring (Oblivion). Each of these stories is a complete world, as fully imagined as most entire novels, at once preposterously surreal and painfully immediate.

Gesturing Toward Reality: David Foster Wallace and Philosophy

By Robert K. Bolger,Scott Korb
  • File : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Bloomsbury Publishing USA
  • Book Code : 1441164081
  • Total of Pages : 272
  • Category : Literary Criticism
  • Members : 532
  • Pdf File: gesturing-toward-reality.pdf

Book Short Summary:

Asked in 2006 about the philosophical nature of his fiction, the late American writer David Foster Wallace replied, "If some people read my fiction and see it as fundamentally about philosophical ideas, what it probably means is that these are pieces where the characters are not as alive and interesting as I meant them to be." Gesturing Toward Reality looks into this quality of Wallace's work-when the writer dons the philosopher's cap-and sees something else. With essays offering a careful perusal of Wallace's extensive and heavily annotated self-help library, re-considerations of Wittgenstein's influence on his fiction, and serious explorations into the moral and spiritual landscape where Wallace lived and wrote, this collection offers a perspective on Wallace that even he was not always ready to see. Since so much has been said in specifically literary circles about Wallace's philosophical acumen, it seems natural to have those with an interest in both philosophy and Wallace's writing address how these two areas come together.

The Legacy of David Foster Wallace

By Samuel Cohen,Lee Konstantinou
  • File : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : University of Iowa Press
  • Book Code : 1609380827
  • Total of Pages : 270
  • Category : Literary Criticism
  • Members : 853
  • Pdf File: the-legacy-of-david-foster-wallace.pdf

Book Short Summary:

In this elegant volume, literary critics scrutinize the existing Wallace scholarship and at the same time pioneer new ways of understanding Wallace's fiction and journalism. In critical essays exploring a variety of topics—including Wallace's relationship to American literary history, his place in literary journalism, his complicated relationship to his postmodernist predecessors, the formal difficulties of his 1996 magnum opus Infinite Jest, his environmental imagination, and the “social life” of his fiction and nonfiction—contributors plumb sources as diverse as Amazon.com reader recommendations, professional book reviews, the 2009 Infinite Summer project, and the David Foster Wallace archive at the University of Texas's Harry Ransom Center.

Steve Tomasula: The Art and Science of New Media Fiction

By David Banash
  • File : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Bloomsbury Publishing USA
  • Book Code : 1628923709
  • Total of Pages : 320
  • Category : Literary Criticism
  • Members : 565
  • Pdf File: steve-tomasula.pdf

Book Short Summary:

Steve Tomasula's work exists at the cutting edges of scientific knowledge and literary techniques. As such, it demands consideration from multiple perspectives and from critics who can guide the reader through the formal innovations and multimedia involutions while providing critical scientific, aesthetic, historical, and technical contexts. This book, the first of its kind, provides this framework, showing readers the richness and relevance of the worlds Tomasula constructs. Steve Tomasula's work is redefining the form of the novel, reinventing the practice of reading, and wrestling with the most urgent questions raised by massive transformations of media and biotechnologies. His work not only charts these changes, it formulates the problems that we have making meaning in our radically changing technological contexts. Vast in scope, inventive in form, and intimate in voice, his novels, short stories, and essays are read and taught by a surprisingly diverse array of scholars in fields ranging from contemporary experimental writing and literary criticism to the history of science, biotechnology and bioart, book studies, and digital humanities.

Diseases and Disorders in Contemporary Fiction

By James Peacock,Tim Lustig
  • File : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Routledge
  • Book Code : 1135078637
  • Total of Pages : 216
  • Category : Literary Criticism
  • Members : 599
  • Pdf File: diseases-and-disorders-in-contemporary-fiction.pdf

Book Short Summary:

The essays in this collection address the current preoccupation with neurological conditions and disorders in contemporary literature by British and American writers. The book places these fictional treatments within a broader cultural and historical context, exploring such topics as the two cultures debate, the neurological turn, postmodernism and the post-postmodern, and responses to September 11th. Considering a variety of materials including mainstream literary fiction, the graphic novel, popular fiction, autobiographical writing, film, and television, contributors consider the contemporary dimensions of the interface between the sciences and humanities, developing the debate about the post-postmodern as a new humanism or a return to realism and investigating questions of form and genre, and of literary continuities and discontinuities. Further, the essays discuss contemporary writers’ attempts to engage the relation between the individual and the social, looking at the relation between the "syndrome syndrome" (referring to the prevalence in contemporary literature of neurological phenomena evident at the biological level) and existing work in the field of trauma studies (where explanations tend to have taken a psychoanalytical form), allowing for perspectives that question some of the assumptions that have marked both these fields. The current literary preoccupation with neurological conditions presents us with a new and distinctive form of trauma literature, one concerned less with psychoanalysis than with the physical and evolutionary status of human beings.

Global Wallace

By Lucas Thompson
  • File : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Bloomsbury Publishing USA
  • Book Code : 150132067X
  • Total of Pages : 240
  • Category : Literary Criticism
  • Members : 643
  • Pdf File: global-wallace.pdf

Book Short Summary:

David Foster Wallace is invariably seen as an emphatically American figure. Lucas Thompson challenges this consensus, arguing that Wallace's investments in various international literary traditions are central to both his artistic practice and his critique of US culture. Thompson shows how, time and again, Wallace's fiction draws on a diverse range of global texts, appropriating various forms of world literature in the attempt to craft fiction that critiques US culture from oblique and unexpected vantage points. Using a wide range of comparative case studies, and drawing on extensive archival research, Global Wallace reveals David Foster Wallace's substantial debts to such unexpected figures as Jamaica Kincaid, Julio Cortázar, Jean Rhys, Octavio Paz, Leo Tolstoy, Zbigniew Herbert, and Albert Camus, among many others. It also offers a more comprehensive account of the key influences that Wallace scholars have already perceived, such as Fyodor Dostoevsky, Franz Kafka, and Manuel Puig. By reassessing Wallace's body of work in relation to five broadly construed geographic territories -- Latin America, Russia, Eastern Europe, France, and Africa -- the book reveals the mechanisms with which Wallace played particular literary traditions off one another, showing how he appropriated vastly different global texts within his own fiction. By expanding the geographic coordinates of Wallace's work in this way, Global Wallace reconceptualizes contemporary American fiction, as being embedded within a global exchange of texts and ideas.

Maximalism in Contemporary American Literature

By Nick Levey
  • File : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Routledge
  • Book Code : 1317205022
  • Total of Pages : 176
  • Category : Literary Criticism
  • Members : 310
  • Pdf File: maximalism-in-contemporary-american-literature.pdf

Book Short Summary:

This book begins a new and foundational discussion of maximalism by investigating how the treatment of detail in contemporary literature impels readers to navigate, tolerate, and enrich the cultural landscape of postindustrial America. It studies the maximalist novels of David Foster Wallace, Nicholson Baker, Thomas Pynchon, and others, considering how overly-detailed writing serves the institutional, emotional, and intellectual needs of contemporary readers and writers. The book argues that maximalist novels not only exceed perceived limits of style, subject matter, and scope, but strive to remake the usefulness of books in contemporary culture, refreshing the act of reading. Levey shows that while these novels are preoccupied with detail and description, they are relatively unconcerned with the traditional goals of representation. Instead, they use detail to communicate particular values and fantasies of intelligence, enthusiasm, and ability attached to the management of complex and excessive information. Whether reinvigorating the banal and trivial in mainstream culture, or soothing anxieties of human insufficiency in the age of automation and the internet, these texts model significant abilities, rather than just objects of significance, and encourage readers to develop habits of reading that complement the demands of an increasingly detailed culture. Drawing upon a diverse range of theoretical schools and cultural texts, including Thing Theory, Marxism, New Formalism, playlists, blogs, and archival manuscripts, the book proposes a new understanding of maximalist writing and a new way of approaching the usefulness of literary objects in contemporary culture.

Global Wallace

By Lucas Thompson
  • File : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Bloomsbury Publishing USA
  • Book Code : 1501320688
  • Total of Pages : 240
  • Category : Literary Criticism
  • Members : 327
  • Pdf File: global-wallace.pdf

Book Short Summary:

David Foster Wallace is invariably seen as an emphatically American figure. Lucas Thompson challenges this consensus, arguing that Wallace's investments in various international literary traditions are central to both his artistic practice and his critique of US culture. Thompson shows how, time and again, Wallace's fiction draws on a diverse range of global texts, appropriating various forms of world literature in the attempt to craft fiction that critiques US culture from oblique and unexpected vantage points. Using a wide range of comparative case studies, and drawing on extensive archival research, Global Wallace reveals David Foster Wallace's substantial debts to such unexpected figures as Jamaica Kincaid, Julio Cortázar, Jean Rhys, Octavio Paz, Leo Tolstoy, Zbigniew Herbert, and Albert Camus, among many others. It also offers a more comprehensive account of the key influences that Wallace scholars have already perceived, such as Fyodor Dostoevsky, Franz Kafka, and Manuel Puig. By reassessing Wallace's body of work in relation to five broadly construed geographic territories -- Latin America, Russia, Eastern Europe, France, and Africa -- the book reveals the mechanisms with which Wallace played particular literary traditions off one another, showing how he appropriated vastly different global texts within his own fiction. By expanding the geographic coordinates of Wallace's work in this way, Global Wallace reconceptualizes contemporary American fiction, as being embedded within a global exchange of texts and ideas.

That's Not a Feeling

By Dan Josefson
  • File : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Soho Press
  • Book Code : 1616951893
  • Total of Pages : 358
  • Category : Fiction
  • Members : 463
  • Pdf File: that-s-not-a-feeling.pdf

Book Short Summary:

This Whiting Award Winner is “a bold, funny, mordant, and deeply intelligent debut” (David Foster Wallace, author of Infinite Jest). A New York Times Editors’ Choice Benjamin arrives with his parents for a tour of Roaring Orchards, a therapeutic boarding school tucked away in upstate New York. Suddenly, his parents are gone and Benjamin learns that he is there to stay. Sixteen years old, and two failed suicide attempts, Benjamin must navigate his way through a new world of morning meds, candor meetings, and cartoon brunches—all run by adults who have yet to really come of age themselves. The only person who comprehends the school’s many rules and rituals is Aubrey, the founder and headmaster who is fragile, brilliant, and prone to rage. But when Aubrey falls ill, life at the school begins to unravel. Benjamin has no one to rely on but the other students, in particular an intriguing but untrustworthy girl named Tidbit. More and more, Benjamin thinks about running away from Roaring Orchards—but he feels an equal need to know just what it is he would be leaving behind . . .

How Abstract Is It? Thinking Capital Now

By Rebecca Colesworthy,Peter Nicholls
  • File : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Routledge
  • Book Code : 1317367820
  • Total of Pages : 180
  • Category : Business & Economics
  • Members : 979
  • Pdf File: how-abstract-is-it-thinking-capital-now.pdf

Book Short Summary:

Since the start of the financial crisis in 2008, the notion that capitalism has become too abstract for all but the most rarefied specialists to understand has been widely presupposed. Yet even in academic circles, the question of abstraction itself – of what exactly abstraction is, and does, under financialisation – seems to have gone largely unexplored – or has it? By putting the question of abstraction centre stage, How Abstract Is It? Thinking Capital Now offers an indispensable counterpoint to the ‘economic turn’ in the humanities, bringing together leading literary and cultural critics in order to propose that we may know far more about capital’s myriad abstractions than we typically think we do. Through in-depth engagement with classic and cutting-edge theorists, agile analyses of recent Hollywood films, groundbreaking readings of David Foster Wallace’s sprawling, unfinished novel, The Pale King, and even original poems, the contributors here suggest that the machinations and costs of finance – as well as alternatives to it – may already be hiding in plain sight. This book was originally published as a special issue of Textual Practice.