David Foster Wallace's margin notes on Stephen King's Carrie and C.S. Lewis' first Narnia book

Illustration for article titled David Foster Wallaces margin notes on Stephen Kings Carrie and C.S. Lewis first Narnia book

David Foster Wallace wrote one of our favorite science fiction-tinged literary novels, Infinite Jest, so his suicide was a huge loss. Now his papers are on display, and you can read some of his scribbled notes on two genre classics.

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The Harry Ransom Center at the University of Texas at Austin acquired Wallace's archive last year, consisting of 30 boxes and eight oversized folders, and announced last month that it's open to researchers. And they've put some tantalizing scans online, including one handwritten page from the first draft of Infinite Jest. They've also put up a few scans of Wallace's dog-eared and scribble-covered copies of some books he taught in his class at Pomona College, "English 102 — Literary Analysis I: Prose Fiction." Here's his notes on a couple pages from Stephen King's Carrie:

Illustration for article titled David Foster Wallaces margin notes on Stephen Kings Carrie and C.S. Lewis first Narnia book
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And Wallace's notes on a couple pages from The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis:

Illustration for article titled David Foster Wallaces margin notes on Stephen Kings Carrie and C.S. Lewis first Narnia book

It would be so cool to see a recording of him teaching those books. Sorry if you saw this when it went up in September, but I only just found it today. [Harry Ransom Center]

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DISCUSSION

I'm a litterature student, aspiring professor, but I have this weird compulsion against writing in books. I don't know why, I just feel that writing in a book is messy, dirty. Writing your name on the back of a cover of having an author signed it is ok though. Yeah, I'm weird.