Sunday, September 14, 2008

RIP David Foster Wallace

.....learning how to think really means learning how to exercise some control over how and what you think. It means being conscious and aware enough to choose what you pay attention to and to choose how you construct meaning from experience. Because if you cannot exercise this kind of choice in adult life, you will be totally hosed. Think of the old cliché about quote the mind being an excellent servant but a terrible master.

This, like many clichés, so lame and unexciting on the surface, actually expresses a great and terrible truth. It is not the least bit coincidental that adults who commit suicide with firearms almost always shoot themselves in: the head. They shoot the terrible master. And the truth is that most of these suicides are actually dead long before they pull the trigger.

Is there some significance to the fact that David Foster Wallace did not commit suicide by firearm, but instead hanged himself?


Carlton said...

I like that this guy received a "genius grant" from the MacArthur Foundation.

Carlton said...

Anyone read anything by him?

Nihil Novum said...

Belated comment, but I read Infinite Jest this year and it's one of my favorite novels I've ever read. Guy had a perspective just completely different from the norm.