Declaration of Principles“It may be true that one has to choose between ethics and aesthetics, but it is no less true that whichever one chooses, one will always find the other at the end of the road.”
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Category Archives: Writing
“DFW: I had a teacher I liked who used to say good fiction’s job was to comfort the disturbed and disturb the comfortable. I guess a big part of serious fiction’s purpose is to give the reader, who like all of us is sort of marooned in her own skull, to give her imaginative access to other selves. Since an ineluctable part of being a human self is suffering, part of what we humans come to art for is an experience of suffering, necessarily a vicarious experience, more like a sort of “generalization” of suffering. Does this make sense? We all suffer alone in the real world; true empathy’s impossible. But if a piece of fiction can allow us imaginatively to identify with a character’s pain, we might then also more easily conceive of others identifying with our own. This is nourishing, redemptive; we become less alone inside. It might just be that simple”
Has to be Pynchon doing the VO. Sounds just like him from the Simpsons appearances.
There is a fantastic selection of David Foster Wallace related mp3s over at The David Foster Wallace Audio Project. This is a great collection, including the long out of print recording of DFW reading Brief Interviews with Hideous Men.
She who did not come, wasn’t she determined
nonetheless to organize and decorate my heart?
If we had to exist to become the one we love,
what would the heart have to create?
Lovely joy left blank, perhaps you are
the center of all my labors and my loves.
If I’ve wept for you so much, it’s because
I preferred you among so many outlined joys.