Disruptive Juxtaposition

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Post-postmodernism Sighting #19

Cribbed from an archived review of David Foster Wallace's "Oblivion". The review's from n+1, which is now required reading:

"To judge by “Octet” and “Good Old Neon,” two of the best Wallace stories of recent years, he seems increasingly eager to tear down the fourth wall—or, as the narrator of “Octet” calls it, to “palpate” the reader directly—by introducing an authorial presence into the midst of his fiction: David Foster Wallace is speaking to you, and here is why. Fourth-wall-breaking constitutes a central technique for the metafictionists with whom Wallace has so often been grouped. But while the means are similar, Wallace pursues them to different ends. He has no interest in highlighting the artificiality of his art, which is and should be self-evident, but rather in communicating thought and feeling as directly as possible without shirking their complexity. The metafictionist’s tools have become part of his standard arsenal, to be used to supplement his talent for self-effacing storytelling and otherwise set aside. Wallace’s goal, finally, is to grant us complete access to his characters’ inner lives, while reminding us that such access must always be incomplete. It’s a brave and paradoxical task worthy of his full attention, and ours" (bold text mine).

Current listening

Aloha, Here Comes Everyone.

The Band, The Band.

Crystal Method, Legion of Boom.

Kate Earl, Fate Is the Hunter.

The Jayhawks, Rainy Day Music.

Kill Bill, Vol 1.
Original Motion Picture Soundtrack.

Lost Legends of Surf Guitar,
Various Artists.

Massive Attack, Blue Lines.

Joni Mitchell, Court & Spark.

Liz Phair, Exile In Guyville.

The Rat Pack, Boys Night Out.

Rolling Stones, Exile on Main St.

Sun Kil Moon, Ghosts of the Great Highway.

Thivery Corporation, The Cosmic Game.

Sunday, September 03, 2006

The Internets are improving

Check out the high-level intellectual wankery over on Barbelith. When the essay "E Unibus Pluram" is dropped in the first 30 seconds of my perusing the site, I know I'm a fan for life. For your Sunday consideration, try this on for size: "Is Paris Hilton a simulacrum?"