Literary Criticism

Download A Companion to David Foster Wallace Studies by Marshall Boswell, Stephen J. Burn PDF

By Marshall Boswell, Stephen J. Burn

ISBN-10: 0230338119

ISBN-13: 9780230338111

Feedback of the paintings of David Foster Wallace has tended to be atomistic, targeting a unmarried element of person works. A significant other to the paintings of David Foster Wallace is designed as a qualified research of all of Wallace's artistic paintings. With essays written via either most sensible students within the box and intriguing beginners, the quantity is anchored via a collection of essays that offer specific readings of every of his significant works of fiction, together with 3 novels and 3 tale collections. Interwoven via those half-dozen single-text stories are thematic-based essays that tackle higher segments of Wallace's success through an eclectic diversity of serious environments, together with arithmetic, the spatial flip in modern feedback, gender thought, the legacy of yankee Pragmatism, and the emergent box of post-postmodern literary reports.

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Additional info for A Companion to David Foster Wallace Studies

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If Wallace’s understanding of language as a “function of relationships between persons” (CW 44) owes a lot to Wittgenstein, his sense of the nature of those relationships draws on an another early twentieth-century figure, the Russian Formalist Mikhail Bakhtin. ” Bakhtin’s understanding of the workings of language centered on the concept of voice. More specifically, thinking about voice enabled him to distinguish between a “monologic” understanding of language, which, he said, pretended that the context of an exchange of words was unimportant, as if each utterance was “the word of no one in particular” (“Discourse” 276), and what he called a “dialogic” account.

In the passage above, recalling that the reader is asked to imagine the scene of her great-grandmother’s demise along with Lenore, the simile of “lying flat as a wet Saltine on some highway with a tire track in her forehead and her walker now a sort of large trivet” is a figurative mash-up that takes the generic “squashed flat as a pancake,” exchanges it for a real-world commodity recognizable to contemporary readers (a wet “Saltine” cracker), and tentatively conflates it with an entirely dissociated old-fashioned object usually placed beneath a hot serving dish to protect the table upon which it sits from the heat (“a sort of large trivet”).

The role model for this is Cheese, one of the punks and the story’s “intelligent” and “curious” analyst-moralist (GCH 67, 68). Wide-eyed behind his pink glasses (no unmediated access there), Cheese offers theories on everything from Jarrett’s technique to the politics of punk to Sick Puppy himself. More importantly, he has real relationships. While Sick Puppy simply uses his friends for expensive thrills, Cheese worries about their well-being. He looks out for Gimlet when she has a bad LSD experience (GCH 69), and is genuinely “interested” in the narrator “as a person” (GCH 64).

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