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To Meet the Maker: The influence of the author in the critical reception of David Foster Wallace [Review Article]

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journal contribution
posted on 22.05.2017, 04:53 authored by Nick Levey
The recent publication of David Lipsky’s “road trip” with David Foster Wallace, Although of Course You End Up Becoming Yourself, gives us another example of an author speaking. Alongside the inevitable release of the late author’s archives to the University of Texas’ Harry Ransom Centre,
it also “speaks” to an ongoing and widespread fascination with the author as Author, especially in the case of David Foster Wallace, and especially – perhaps predictably – since his untimely and tragic suicide. Although Of Course You End Up Becoming Yourself is a strange sort of interview, more of a diary or even a Gaddis / Puig novel than a formal “sit-down.” Lipsky seems to have intended it to possess a similar feel to one of Wallace’s own fictions, full of “raw” and unedited transcripts of dialogue which stop midsentence when a tape runs out and start again a few minutes late in the middle of another – a kind of cinema verite style of documentary. While this can present frustrations, it does lend the book its own particular aesthetic which helps “drive” it along. And that is the thing about the book, it is almost
naggingly interesting.


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