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Title: ENGL 485-01, Senior Seminar: Infinite Jest and American Fiction After Postmodernism, Fall 2013
Authors: Boswell, Marshall
Keywords: English, Department of;Syllabus;Academic departments;Curriculum;Text;2014 Spring
Issue Date: 22-Aug-2013
Publisher: Memphis, Tenn. : Rhodes College
Series/Report no.: Syllabi CRN;14544
Abstract: When it was first published in 1996, David Foster Wallace’s 1079 page novel Infinite Jest was instantly recognized by critics as “the next step in fiction” (Sven Birkerts), though few critics could articulate what that “next step” was, exactly. Set in the future and focusing on a mythical film that is so entertaining that watching it leads to catatonia, the novel takes on such disparate issues as drug addiction, film theory, Alcoholics Anonymous, Jamesian pragmatism, existentialism, terrorism, game theory, theoretical mathematics, and tennis—lots and lots of tennis. Nearly two decades later, Infnite Jest remains the signature text for writers of Wallace’s generation. As its influence continues to deepen and spread, so, too, do the contours of the post-postmodern novel begin to clarify. In this course, we will read Wallace’s gargantuan novel as well as a selection of contemporary novels written under Wallace’s influence in order to trace the trajectory from modernism to postmodernism and beyond. The course will culminate in a major research project.
Description: This syllabus was submitted to the Office of Academic by the course instructor. Uploaded by Lorie Yearwood.
Appears in Collections:Course Syllabi

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