Date of Award
Often aligned with post-postmodernism, David Foster Wallace’s later work retreats from the ironic detachment and cynicism of postmodernism in favor of a more sincere approach to writing. This is especially evident in his posthumous novel, The Pale King, a work dealing with what it means to be human in the Information Age. After locating the novel’s setting within a recent history of American masculinity and work, this paper examines several of the novel’s male characters as they struggle to be fully realized boys and men, concluding that The Pale King is Wallace’s final statement that enduring the ennui of modern life is admirable, even heroic.
Guidry, David J., "“Cowboy, Paladin, Hero?”: Being Boys and Men in David Foster Wallace’s The Pale King" (2015). University of New Orleans Theses and Dissertations. 1975.