David Foster Wallace


Born
in Ithaca, New York, The United States
February 21, 1962

Died
September 12, 2008

Website

Genre

Influences


David Foster Wallace worked surprising turns on nearly everything: novels, journalism, vacation. His life was an information hunt, collecting hows and whys. "I received 500,000 discrete bits of information today," he once said, "of which maybe 25 are important. My job is to make some sense of it." He wanted to write "stuff about what it feels like to live. Instead of being a relief from what it feels like to live." Readers curled up in the nooks and clearings of his style: his comedy, his brilliance, his humaneness.

His life was a map that ends at the wrong destination. Wallace was an A student through high school, he played football, he played tennis, he wrote a philosophy thesis and a novel before he graduated from Amherst, he went to writ
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Average rating: 4.13 · 285,928 ratings · 26,900 reviews · 105 distinct worksSimilar authors
Infinite Jest

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A Supposedly Fun Thing I'll...

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This Is Water: Some Thought...

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Brief Interviews with Hideo...

3.86 avg rating — 23,891 ratings — published 1999 — 59 editions
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The Broom of the System

3.84 avg rating — 18,711 ratings — published 1987 — 42 editions
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The Pale King

3.96 avg rating — 14,830 ratings — published 2011 — 51 editions
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Oblivion

4.07 avg rating — 12,036 ratings — published 2004 — 42 editions
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Girl with Curious Hair

3.88 avg rating — 11,959 ratings — published 1989 — 47 editions
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Both Flesh and Not: Essays

3.86 avg rating — 4,951 ratings — published 2012 — 28 editions
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More books by David Foster Wallace…

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Tech pioneer, cofounder of Microsoft, cochair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and author Bill Gates is an avid reader who has becom...
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“The so-called ‘psychotically depressed’ person who tries to kill herself doesn’t do so out of quote ‘hopelessness’ or any abstract conviction that life’s assets and debits do not square. And surely not because death seems suddenly appealing. The person in whom Its invisible agony reaches a certain unendurable level will kill herself the same way a trapped person will eventually jump from the window of a burning high-rise. Make no mistake about people who leap from burning windows. Their terror of falling from a great height is still just as great as it would be for you or me standing speculatively at the same window just checking out the view; i.e. the fear of falling remains a constant. The variable here is the other terror, the fire’s flames: when the flames get close enough, falling to death becomes the slightly less terrible of two terrors. It’s not desiring the fall; it’s terror of the flames. And yet nobody down on the sidewalk, looking up and yelling ‘Don’t!’ and ‘Hang on!’, can understand the jump. Not really. You’d have to have personally been trapped and felt flames to really understand a terror way beyond falling.”
David Foster Wallace

“Everybody is identical in their secret unspoken belief that way deep down they are different from everyone else.”
David Foster Wallace, Infinite Jest

“I do things like get in a taxi and say, "The library, and step on it.”
David Foster Wallace, Infinite Jest

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