Tag Archives: all things shining

David Foster Wallace was not famously depressive

The LA Review of Books, reviewing Hubert Dreyfus and Sean Kelly’s All Things Shining:

It may seem strange for a book about the good life to make such an extended example of Wallace, given that he was famously depressive and hanged himself.

No!  David Foster Wallace was not famously depressive.   Lots of people who read him very, very thoroughly, including me, didn’t know he suffered from depression until after his death.  His depression is only intermittently present in his writing and never governs it.  To read his books as a warm-up to his suicide is to waste them.

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