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The Cambridge Companion to David Foster Wallace


Part of Cambridge Companions to Literature

Marshall Boswell, Andrew Hoberek, Lee Konstantinou, Matthew Luter, Adam Kelly, David Hering, Jeffrey Severs, Mary Holland, Clare Hayes-Brady, Robert L. McLaughlin, Andrew Warren, Matthew Mullins, Lucas Thompson, Jurrit Daalder, Joseph Tabbi
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  • Date Published: November 2018
  • availability: In stock
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9781107195950

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About the Authors
  • Best known for his masterpiece Infinite Jest, David Foster Wallace re-invented fiction and non-fiction for a generation with his groundbreaking and original work. Wallace's desire to blend formal innovation and self-reflexivity with the communicative and restorative function of literature resulted in works that appeal as much to a reader's intellect as they do emotion. As such, few writers in recent memory have quite matched his work's intense critical and popular impact. The essays in this Companion, written by top Wallace scholars, offer a historical and cultural context for grasping Wallace's significance, provide rigorous individual readings of each of his major works, whether story collections, non-fiction, or novels, and address the key themes and concerns of these works, including aesthetics, politics, religion and spirituality, race, and post-humanism. This wide-ranging volume is a necessary resource for understanding an author now widely regarded as one of the most influential and important of his time.

    • Provides a comprehensive overview of all of Wallace's major works
    • Includes key thematic essays on important and/or recurring themes in Wallace's work
    • Brings together some of the top scholars from two generations of Wallace scholarship
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    Product details

    • Date Published: November 2018
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9781107195950
    • length: 284 pages
    • dimensions: 236 x 158 x 18 mm
    • weight: 0.58kg
    • availability: In stock
  • Table of Contents

    Part I. Historical and Cultural Contexts:
    1. Slacker redemption: Wallace and generation X Marshall Boswell
    2. Wallace and American literature Andrew Hoberek
    3. Wallace's 'bad influence' Lee Konstantinou
    Part II. Early Works, Story Collections, and Non-Fiction:
    4. Broom of the System and Girl with Curious Hair Matthew Luter
    5. Brief Interviews with Hideous Men Adam Kelly
    6. Oblivion David Hering
    7. Wallace's non-fiction Jeffrey Severs
    Part III. The Major Novels:
    8. Infinite Jest Mary Holland
    9. 'Palely loitering': on not finishing (in) The Pale King Clare Hayes-Brady
    Part IV. Themes and Topics:
    10. Wallace's aesthetic Robert L. McLaughlin
    11. Wallace and politics Andrew Warren
    12. Wallace, spirituality, and religion Matthew Mullins
    13. Wallace and race Lucas Thompson
    14. Wallace's geographic metafiction Jurrit Daalder
    15. David (Foster) Wallace and the (world) system Joseph Tabbi.

  • Editor

    Ralph Clare, Boise State University, Idaho
    Ralph Clare is Associate Professor of English at Boise State University, Idaho and specializes in post-45 American literature. He is the author of Fictions Inc.: The Corporation in Postmodern Fiction, Film, and Popular Culture (2014) and is currently at work on a study of emotion and affect in contemporary fiction of the neoliberal era.


    Marshall Boswell, Andrew Hoberek, Lee Konstantinou, Matthew Luter, Adam Kelly, David Hering, Jeffrey Severs, Mary Holland, Clare Hayes-Brady, Robert L. McLaughlin, Andrew Warren, Matthew Mullins, Lucas Thompson, Jurrit Daalder, Joseph Tabbi

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