Thursday, January 7, 2016
The Infinite Winter is Coming
Yep, it's here. My copy of David Foster Wallace's magnum opus, Infinte Jest arrived today. I will be reading the 3 pound, 1079-page, extensively-footnoted novel as part of an online Book Club called The Infinite Winter, which is being organized in honor of the twentieth anniversary of Infinite Jest's publication in 1996. The online book club community reading of the IJ will begin on January 31, and it will run through May with a weekly reading schedule of roughly 75 pages.
For those of you who know little to nothing about Wallace or IJ, let's just say this is one of the more challenging works of post-modern fiction you're going to run across. And, though I have an MA in English - and twenty-three years of teaching experience - I am fairly certain I would not be able to fully understand and appreciate this literary masterpiece without the help of a reading community.
Like many, I've had IJ on my to-do-list for a while now, and the Infinte Winter is the perfect opportunity to jump in. Infinite Jest evokes the same excited, but daunting, feeling I had before reading Pynchon's V. in graduate school. While I knew I would appreciate the novel regardless of how I read it, I greatly benefited from the community of readers sharing thoughts, ideas, questions, and, of course, explanations of allusions that I might have missed. So far, I think I've encouraged a few others to at least buy the book and consider the challenge.
Can't wait to get started.