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Saturday, June 8, 2013

David Foster Wallace Kind of Day

You may have seen this already. Maybe not. It's worth another view even if you have.  Inspiring and truthful, and a great reminder of how thoughtful David Foster Wallace was, and how much the world is missing without him in it. This is a short film based on his commencement speech at Kenyon College in 2005, maybe the best commencement speech. Ever.

The full speech is also available as a book.

Speaking of David Foster Wallace, I've been enjoying the most recent collection of his essays. Not only is the writing fantastic (naturally) but the book itself is such a beautiful object.

Both Flesh and Not

Never has Wallace's seemingly endless curiosity been more evident than in this compilation of work spanning nearly 20 years of writing. Here, Wallace turns his critical eye with equal enthusiasm toward Roger Federer and Jorge Luis Borges; Terminator 2 and The Best of the Prose Poem; the nature of being a fiction writer and the quandary of defining the essay; the best underappreciated novels and the English language's most irksome misused words; and much more. 

Both Flesh and Not restores Wallace's essays as originally written, and it includes a selection from his personal vocabulary list, an assembly of unusual words and definitions.

And just to round out your Saturday with David Foster Wallace...here is Ami's review of Infinite Jest

Infinite Jest is a great summer book, not so much because it's a beach read but more because it will take you ALL SUMMER to read it. But what an enthralling, immersive experience! Both profoundly hilarious and absurdly sad, Infinite Jest is a sweeping, spiraling epic that builds upon itself with control and adeptness. I truly believe that this is the Great American Novel to end all Great American Novels.

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