Ok, ok, David Foster Wallace cai, não raras vezes, numa espécie de barroquismo pós-moderno que visa unicamente um efeito cómico e que nos distrai do essencial (partindo do princípio que o essencial não é a exibição do barroquismo pós-moderno). Concedo. No entanto, a recensão à biografia de Dostoievski, de Joseph Frank, tem isto:
“These and so many other FMD creatures are alive – retain what Frank calls their «immense vitality» - not because they’re just skillfully drawn types or facets of human beings but because, acting within plausible and morally compelling plots, they dramatize the profoundest parts of all humans, the parts most conflicted, most serious –the ones with the most at stake.”
“He [o russo] wrote fiction about identity, moral value, death, will, sexual vs. spiritual love, greed, freedom, obsession, reason, faith, suicide. And he did it without ever reducing his characters to mouthpieces or his books to tracts.”
Inspirar. Aqui vamos nós:
“The big thing that makes Dostoevsky invaluable for american readers and writers is that he appears to possess degrees of passion, conviction, and engagement with deep moral issues that we – here, today – cannot or do not permit ourselves. [...] Upon his finishing Frank’s books, though, I think that any serious American reader/writer will find himself driven to think hard about what exactly it is that makes many of the novelists of our own place and time look so thematically shallow and lightweight, so morally impoverished, in comparison to Gogol or Dostoevsky (or even to lesser lights like Lermontov and Turguenev). Frank’s bio prompts us to ask ourselves why we seem to require of our art an ironic distance from deep convictions or desperate questions, so that contemporary writers have to either make jokes of them or else try to work them in under cover of some formal trick like intertextual quotation or incongruous juxtaposition, sticking the real urgent stuff inside asteriks as part of some multivalent defamiliarization-flourish or some such shit. [...] The good old modernists, among their other accomplishments, elevated aesthetics to the level of ethics – maybe even metaphysics – and Serious Novels after Joyce tend to be valued and studied mainly for their formal ingenuity. Such is the modernist legacy that we now presume as a matter of course that «serious» literature will be aesthetically distanced from real lived life. Add to this the requirement of textual self-consciousness imposed by post-modernism and literary theory, and it’s probably fair to say that Dostoevsky et al. were free of certain cultural expectations that severely constrain our own novelists’ ability to be serious.”
Como é que alguém que é apresentado na capa do livro como “The heir apparent to Thomas Pynchon” escreve uma coisa destas, em choque com tudo o que de sagrado há no pós-modernismo? David Foster Wallace suicidou-se em 2008.
Consider the Lobster And Other Essays, Abacus, 2005