This Week’s Article

In David Foster Wallace, Matt, Tuesday's Article on September 21, 2010 by Two Barbers Tagged: , , , ,

Thoughts on David Foster Wallace

-5th installment


Alongside the pain, there is an dutifully present irony within the mental heap formed mainly out of thoughts engendered by Wallace’s prose and his suicide (that which is fragmented [obviously in its existence as a ‘heap’] but also interconnected in more abstract ways [also obvious but not so front-and-center] that I think are probably felt in those same streams of pain and irony, among others). The irony is the fan’s alone though, not Wallace’s. A lot has been written about him since his death, and it seems the volume of blogs, books, and articles has expanded steadily and will just continue to expand. I predict that soon after A Pale King comes out this April, his will become a house-hold name and, he, a literary figure of Hemingwayian stature in American culture.

A cursory illustrative list:

  • To-date and in the future; Blogs like The Howling Fantods and Forever DFW.
  • Up-coming; Biography by D.T. Max, writer for The New Yorker.
  • September 14, 2010; Archive of personal papers opens at the Harry Ransom Center in the University of Texas.
  • April 13, 2010; Release of Although Of Course You End Up Becoming Yourself by David Lipsky, the first biography-ish.
  • September 25, 2009; film version of Brief Interviews with Hideous Men, adapted and directed by Joh Krasinski opens in theaters.
  • June 21-September 21, 2009; “Infinite Summer”- internet based collective reading of Infinite Jest and chat forum run by writer Matthew Baldwin
  • April 14, 2009; This Is Water a small coffee table type publication of Wallace’s speech at Kenyon College is released.
  • September 12, 2008-present; approx. 300 reports, obituaries, and in memoria, since his death in all major media publications you can think of, NYTimes, Wall Street JournalLATimesRolling Stone, Playboy, internet forums like, and broadcast such as ABC News, as well as in Spanish, German, and Italian.
  • etc.

But to the David Foster Wallace reader, which is a more gracious way of saying ‘fan’, the only writer capable of writing a sufficient expiation of his suicide, of sorting through that heap, is Wallace himself.


-check out next …Week’s Article for the 6th installment

Audio from David Lipsky\’s Roadtrip with DFW


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