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David Foster Wallace:
>If I have a real enemy, a patriarch for my patricide, it’s probably Barth.

Gore Vidal:
> Barth is exactly the sort of writer our departments of English were bound, sooner or later, to produce. . . . The currently fashionable technique of stopping to take a look at the story as it is being told simply draws attention to the meagerness of what is there.

What did everyone have against the poor guy?
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>>21298827
Jock pseuds who made it picking on a literal who to seem edgy
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Implicit in the pathology of postmodernism is coming to hate one's progenitors.
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>>21298827
Have you read Lost in the Funhouse? Dude had it coming
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>>21298827
Because Barth is:

1. post-modern, and very humorous;
2. writes well.

DFW was probably lying, as he was influenced by Barth.
Gore Vidal was a journalist who called himself a writer, someone who wrote 19th century novels for the New York bourgeoisie who likes to think of itself as "cultured", the sort of people who would rather watch a movie but read the book because it's "high culture".

The kind of people who read Barth also read Joyce and Beckett.
The kind of people who read Vidal also read Obama's autobiography and political books about Trump.

Nabokov really liked Barth, by the way.
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>>21299073
>Nabokov really liked Barth
Because Barth was a friend and publicly sucked Nabokov's dick every chance he got.
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>>21298827
I do like him even though I haven’t read much. But reading Giles Goat-Boy at least I did get the sense that there wasn’t much of lived, vivid experience in it, it felt a bit too cloistered and abstract. Other American postmodern authors like Pynchon just have a specificity of detail and strength of imagination that that novel lacked.
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>>21299073
>DFW was probably lying, as he was influenced by Barth.
That does not really mean he is lying. People can change and they can be conflicted. More importantly you have have poor comprehension, he is not saying he hates Barth, he is saying Barth epitomizes everything he is rebelling against with his writing, hence the "a patriarch for my patricide" comment.
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>>21299163
>lived, vivid experience
>specificity of detail

Note that Barth would not necessarily care about those.
Keep in mind that the experience of reading is, in itself, as vivid and lived as any other experience.
The separation between life and literature is a delusion.
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>>21299073
>The kind of people who read Barth also read Joyce and Beckett.
So pseuds interested in gimmicky bullshit?
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>>21299183
That’s a really great way of looking at it. But also, for sake of argument, don‘t you think it means that Barth’s books would be more palatable for an audience who does nothing except read, for whom there is literally no life outside literature? Ideally I think books should spur us to live rather than just to read.
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>>21299196
All literature is gimmicky. If you think there is any "deeper truth" or "the real thing, bro", then you are deluding yourself with second-rate metaphysics.
Literature is an art. Arts consist in using tools to manipulate objects. A musician uses an instrument to manipulate sound. A writer uses literary techniques to manipulate words. All a writer can do is apply those techniques in less or more creative ways to the words he knows.
Anything else is mere subjective impressions not very different from "new age" and religious talk -- impressions such as "All of man is contained in Shakespeare!" or "Dostoevsky has shown the truth, the real truth of human existence!", which might very well resonate with some, and good for them, but objectively it's pretty meaningless.
Even if you admire a poem because it shows some truth that you consider important, you are not admiring it poetically, but philosophically, because a philosophical essay could have contained precisely the same truth. You only admire it poetically inasmuch as you admire the poetic techniques (gimmicks) that the poet is applying to the words he uses.

>>21299212
>But also, for sake of argument, don‘t you think it means that Barth’s books would be more palatable for an audience who does nothing except read, for whom there is literally no life outside literature?

I have no idea if there's any correlation. But maybe it's true, and the people who read Barth spend less time outside, but in that case the same could probably be said (probably even more strongly) for those who read Homer in Greek, or the Bible, or for readers in general when compared to non-readers.

>Ideally I think books should spur us to live rather than just to read.

If you need books to tell you to live, then you are in a bad situation.



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