Ramblings & ephemera

David Foster Wallace on minimalism & metafiction

From Larry McCaffery’s “Conversation with David Foster Wallace” (Dalkey Archive Press at the University of Illinois: Summer 1993):

Minimalism’s just the other side of metafictional recursion. The basic problem’s still the one of the mediating narrative consciousness. Both minimalism and metafiction try to resolve the problem in radical ways. Opposed, but both so extreme they end up empty. Recursive metafiction worships the narrative consciousness, makes “it” the subject of the text. Minimalism’s even worse, emptier, because it’s a fraud: it eschews not only self-reference but any narrative personality at all, tries to pretend there “is” no narrative consciousness in its text. This is so fucking American, man: either make something your God and cosmos and then worship it, or else kill it.

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