Infinite Summer

Formed in the summer of 2009 to read David Foster Wallace's masterwork "Infinite Jest".
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The Inficratic Oath: first, post no spoilers. Limit your I.J. discussion to only those events that take place on or before the page 981 (100%).



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 Post subject: Himself
PostPosted: Fri Jul 03, 2009 11:21 am 
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Just an FYI. "Himself "is a common Irish appellation for the head of a household. We always referred to my father as "Himself"


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 Post subject: Re: Himself
PostPosted: Fri Jul 03, 2009 11:25 am 
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Given that tidbit, we should consider it significant that a tall, alcoholic named Jim (James) is stalking this novel as the mysterious and dead father of the Incandenzas, a book which has been compared to Ulysses by many reviewers. This is another of DFW's intertextual references. This time, of course, to Joyce.


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 Post subject: Re: Himself
PostPosted: Fri Jul 03, 2009 12:55 pm 
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Jeffrey Manor wrote:
Just an FYI. "Himself "is a common Irish appellation for the head of a household. We always referred to my father as "Himself"


Thank you for this. I read ahead a little this morning, and came across someone other than JOI referred to as Himself, so I was a little confused.

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 Post subject: Re: Himself
PostPosted: Fri Jul 03, 2009 5:57 pm 
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Cool fact to know.. thanks

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 Post subject: Re: Himself
PostPosted: Sat Jul 04, 2009 11:48 am 
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Location: County Wicklow, Ireland
Jeffrey Manor wrote:
Just an FYI. "Himself "is a common Irish appellation for the head of a household. We always referred to my father as "Himself"


While I list myself living in Ireland, I am not Irish, but I wanted to add to this nonetheless. I've heard the term Himself used to denote the father of the house, but also I've heard it used sarcastically to describe a person who might think he is more important than he is. So, it might also be synonymous with a word like Master of the House, with emphasis on the word Master. And to stretch this just a bit, one could also say that it alludes to a word like "God." Maybe......


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 Post subject: Re: Himself
PostPosted: Sat Jul 04, 2009 5:45 pm 
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Good point tomj. Also, though, my Irish in-laws use it to denote a person who actually is important. That is to say, it is used both mockingly, and not (and in Ireland, usually both at once.)

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 Post subject: Re: Himself
PostPosted: Sun Jul 05, 2009 11:34 am 
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tomj and bluestocking --thank you for adding to this. My parents were 1st generation Irish and I can clearly hear my mother calling my father Himself in a teasing manner. And she would also describe someone else as Himself when she thought the guy "was full of himself." Also appreciated the link to Ulysses. The depth and layering of this book is clearly Joycean so no doubt DFW would pay homage to Joyce. ( a Himself if there ever was one!)


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