Infinite Summer

Formed in the summer of 2009 to read David Foster Wallace's masterwork "Infinite Jest".
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 Post subject: DFW's Commencement Address
PostPosted: Thu Jun 25, 2009 6:13 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jun 04, 2009 2:42 am
Posts: 75
Here's a link DFW's commencement address to the 2005 class at Kenyon College. If you can't link to it, message me and I will email it to you.

..."A huge percentage of the stuff that I tend to be automatically certain of is, it turns out, totally wrong and deluded. Here's one example of the utter wrongness of something I tend to be automatically sure of: Everything in my own immediate experience supports my deep belief that I am the absolute center of the universe, the realest, most vivid and important person in existence...."


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 Post subject: Re: DFW's Commencement Address
PostPosted: Thu Jun 25, 2009 7:11 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jun 23, 2009 7:36 pm
Posts: 42
Location: Korea
Since reading that address, I try kept the mantra " I am not the center of the universe" in my heart and mind.


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 Post subject: Re: DFW's Commencement Address
PostPosted: Fri Jun 26, 2009 11:06 am 
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Joined: Tue Jun 16, 2009 8:53 am
Posts: 7
Location: Maryland
Ever since I first read this a few months ago I have a whole new outlook when standing in line at the grocery store!


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 Post subject: Re: DFW's Commencement Address
PostPosted: Sun Jun 28, 2009 5:14 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jun 24, 2009 2:01 pm
Posts: 5
Location: Philadelphia, PA
I have read this several times. It, like his interviews and other written works, is full of so much insight. He really had such a sense of humanity.

Of his death I read that someone once said "The world will forever be culturally poorer, because he will not write another word". It's so tragically true...


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 Post subject: Re: DFW's Commencement Address
PostPosted: Tue Jul 07, 2009 11:59 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jul 07, 2009 10:57 pm
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Location: Finland
I always have to think about the traffic jam bit... I found myself making up (im)possible stories about people passing by too fast in their expensive cars... and it made me feel better, I wasn't stressed out anymore. But isn't it to some extend a way of escaping from real life? Escaping to another, better world of our own? But then there's the question: What is "real"? DFW keeps me going on thinking, that's what I like about his work, he widens my ways of thinking...

_________________
"It is not light that we need, but fire; it is not the gentle shower, but thunder. We need the storm, the whirlwind, and the earthquake." (Frederick Douglass)


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 Post subject: Re: DFW's Commencement Address
PostPosted: Wed Jul 08, 2009 8:07 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jun 23, 2009 7:36 pm
Posts: 42
Location: Korea
I find making stories up about other people stuck with you in traffic jams, grocery store lines, etc. humanizes the shared situation you're in. It's about being conscious of our default setting (Me as a unique special person) and being mindful of another people.


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 Post subject: Re: DFW's Commencement Address
PostPosted: Mon Aug 10, 2009 10:27 am 
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Joined: Tue Jun 02, 2009 1:15 pm
Posts: 16
oh i love the part with the fish. and i love that this part was also in IJ after Gately shares his doubts about his spirituality.


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 Post subject: Re: DFW's Commencement Address
PostPosted: Tue Aug 18, 2009 10:58 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jun 22, 2009 4:45 pm
Posts: 24
This is the reason I take my Kindle to read in grocery lines and my iPod to listen to podcasts in traffic. There's nothing like L.A. traffic to make you forget your religion.


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 Post subject: Re: DFW's Commencement Address
PostPosted: Fri Aug 21, 2009 3:30 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jun 30, 2009 1:52 pm
Posts: 41
As Matt Bucher has pointed out on wallace-l, a recently-broadcasted public radio tribute to DFW includes a small section of the audio of Wallace delivering the speech.

http://www.wpr.org/book/davidfosterwallace/

Scroll down to "audio extras" if you just want to listen to the speech clip, but the interviews are awesome too.


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