Monash University

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Reason: Under embargo until May 2021. After this date a copy can be supplied under Section 51(2) of the Australian Copyright Act 1968 by submitting a document delivery request through your library

“To You it’s Just Words”: David Foster Wallace’s Fiction and Affect Theory

posted on 2019-05-14, 01:11 authored by AISLING NANDINI SMITH
Affect is an underlying thread in David Foster Wallace studies; discussions of sincerity, irony and empathy implicitly assume that affect exists in Wallace’s writing as a key concern. However, affect itself has remained largely untheorised, with critics usually dissolving explorations of affect into these frameworks. In contrast, this thesis sets out to explore Wallace’s fiction through the lens of affect theory. Rather than discussing affect in a general way, it focuses on specific affects. Each of the chapters traces an individual affect across one of Wallace’s fictional works.


Principal supervisor

Melinda Harvey

Additional supervisor 1

Ali Alizadeh

Year of Award


Department, School or Centre

School of Language, Literatures, Cultures and Linguistics


Doctor of Philosophy

Degree Type


Campus location



Faculty of Arts