Get David Foster Wallace's Infinite Jest: A Reader's Guide (2nd PDF

By Stephen J. Burn

ISBN-10: 1441186328

ISBN-13: 9781441186324

Infinite Jest has been hailed as one the good sleek American novels and its writer, David Foster Wallace, who devoted suicide in 2008, as probably the most influential and cutting edge authors of the prior two decades. Don DeLillo referred to as countless Jest a “three-stage rocket to the future,” a piece “equal to the large, babbling spin-out sweep of latest life,” whereas Time journal incorporated Infinite Jest on its checklist of a hundred maximum Novels released among 1923-2006.

David Foster Wallace's endless Jest: A Reader's Guide was once the 1st publication to be released at the novel and is a key reference if you happen to desire to discover extra. endless Jest has turn into an exemplar for hassle in modern Fiction—its 1,079 pages jam-packed with verbal invention, indirect narration, and a scattered, nonlinear, chronology.

In this comprehensively revised second edition, Burn maps Wallace’s effect on modern American fiction, outlines Wallace’s poetics, and offers a full-length research of the unconventional, drawing out an important topics and concepts, earlier than surveying Wallace’s post-Infinite Jest output, together with The faded King.

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Extra info for David Foster Wallace's Infinite Jest: A Reader's Guide (2nd Edition) (Continuum Contemporaries)

Sample text

1: 115, 116). It’s possible to argue that there’s a distinction between literature that explores the problems raised by irony and literature that has been contaminated by irony’s unsettling vision, but what is clear is that both metafiction and irony are entangled in questions of representation that precede the 1960s. Wallace, himself, increasingly acknowledged this—in one of his copies of Dostoevsky’s The Idiot, for example, Wallace marked the passage discussing Radomsky’s retirement from the army (“he always talked in a jesting manner about the most serious matters, so that it was quite impossible to make out whether he meant it or not, especially if he did not want people to be sure” [244]), and in a marginal note compared the scene to the 1990s.

Several examples of this are explored in more detail in the next chapter, but two of the most obvious feature Gately’s stepfather and Steeply’s father. These characters are both obsessed with “data analysis” (507), but in each case Wallace shows their cataloging to be indicative of a deeper lack of control. Gately’s stepfather, for example, is a vicious alcoholic, who precisely records every drink he has in his notebook. He is, Wallace explains, “the sort of person who equated incredibly careful record-keeping with control” (841), but after eight drinks he inevitably begins to beat his wife according to a “regular schedule” (446).

Compared to Infinite Jest’s “vast multileveled tangle” of intersecting narrative fragments (Infinite Jest 189), “A Radically Condensed History of Postindustrial Life” masquerades as an attempt to empty his work of the signature qualities of excess, and—at just seventy-nine words long—it is the shortest fiction Wallace published: When they were introduced, he made a witticism, hoping to be liked. She laughed extremely hard, hoping to be liked. Then each drove home alone, staring straight ahead, with the very same twist to their faces.

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David Foster Wallace's Infinite Jest: A Reader's Guide (2nd Edition) (Continuum Contemporaries) by Stephen J. Burn


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