today i came across a speech given by wallace at a symposium sponsored by the PEN American Center in New York City to celebrate the publication of a new translation of kafka’s “The Castle”. toward the end of the speech i came across what i found to be one of the basic tenets of the re-articulation of christian faith that we’ve been attempting over the past number of years, particularly the portion referencing the “horrific struggle”. as well, it gave great insight into much of infinite jest’s thematic intent. i’ve included it here for your inspection:
“And it is this, I think, that makes Kafka’s wit inaccessible to children whom our culture has trained to see jokes as entertainment and entertainment as reassurance. It’s not that students don’t ‘get’ Kafka’s humor but that we’ve taught them to see humor as something you get — the same way we’ve taught them that a self is something you just have. No wonder they cannot appreciate the really central Kafka joke — that the horrific struggle to establish a human self results in a self whose humanity is inseparable from that horrific struggle. That our endless and impossible journey toward home is in fact our home. It’s hard to put into words up at the blackboard, believe me. You can tell them that maybe it’s good they don’t ‘get] Kafka. You can ask them to imagine his art as a kind of door. To envision us readers coming up and pounding on this door, pounding and pounding, not just wanting admission but needing it, we don’t know what it is but we can feel it, this total desperation to enter, pounding and pushing and kicking, etc. That, finally, the door opens…and it opens outward: we’ve been inside what we wanted all along. _Das ist komisch_.”
but then i must show you this:
i am wondering what color the bandana is and whether it matches or compliments the turtleneck.