Read the fucking footnotes. There’s like pages worth of footnotes. You can’t skip them. If you’re putting in the effort to read Infinite Jest then. David Foster Wallace, the reigning champion of footnotes, decided to use endnotes for Infinite Jest for practical as well as aesthetic reasons. Wallace began writing Infinite Jest in earnest in Much of it is single- spaced, and what footnotes existed at this stage appear at the.

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Important We don’t allow personal recommendation posts. Click here for the footnoets rules Please report any comment that does not follow the rules and remember that mods have the final say. Pretty much as the title states.

Will I be missing all that much? So yeah, what if I just read the book but skip the footnotes? Beyond having extremely relevant information, whole chapters and pure hilarity, by flipping back in forth you mimic a tennis match. I think the footnotes are essential to this novel. They are not like normal footnotes. And it’s a long read with or without them. There is a lot of faulty advice at the top of this thread. Do not skip the endnotes. There is very important information in the endnotes that will make the novel enjoyable.

See, that might be an accurate description in a lot of books, especially non-fiction, where the footnotes contain sources and a little historical context that may or may not be necessary to understand the argument the author’s making. But that is not the case with DFW.


The footnotes are a significant part of his style and I would say that’s often where his voice is clearest. If you skip that part, then you’re really missing out on what makes him so much fun to read for many people.

That’s kind of like asking, for any other book, “What if I just skip every 3rd sentence? You won’t be getting all the book has to offer. People are trying to help you out footnottes answering your question. And they are giving you the right advice: Forget about all these preconceived notions ifninite misconceptions and you will have a much better time reading. Read the fucking footnotes. There’s like pages worth of footnotes.

You can’t skip them. If you’re putting in the effort to ijfinite Infinite Jest then grit your teeth and flip to the back when you see a footnote.

If an author does footnotes at all and if their agent infinte editor don’t talk them out of itthen it’s a safe bet that they’re an integral part of the experience. Especially if there’s a metric assload of them. There are a few footnotes that are several pages long. The political issues Quebec extremism, Clean movement etc The videography seems unnecessary.

There are almost entire subchapters hidden in those footnotes.

15 Facts About ‘Infinite Jest’ | Mental Floss

People skip stuff in books all the time. Boring parts, digressions, stuff they find offensive, et cetera.

You can read it however you like. It won’t be the way the author intended, but if you don’t care about that, then it doesn’t matter.

Infinite Jest at 20: 20 things you need to know

You won’t be in any position to judge it when you’re done. But, again, if you don’t care about that, then so what? Some of the footnotes inifnite so funny that I spewed hot tea out of my nostrils reading them. In particular, the mock-academic literary and cinematographic criticism.

You would be losing a large part of the reading experience. You would also be missing a lot of important details. They are literally an extension of the narrative and footnohes essential to read. But maybe I do want to be able to judge it at least somewhat.


I am currently reading it. I say currently, but what I mean is: When I have the time to dedicate to the pure immensity of it, both reading footnotes and Googling word definitions, footnotse is quite helpful with the obscure references and even words he made upI read it. It’s not a quick, fun read, in the general sense. But I’m fascinated with how he writes, his irony infinife the story.

I can see why some people hate it, and why some love it. No one will think poorly of you whether you read the book or not, footnotes or not, but I say if you’re going to tackle that foothotes, go big or go home.

It essentially compares people’s attraction to easy, trite masturbation instead of more difficult, meaningful interaction, an idea wonderfully parodied by your response. Use of this site constitutes acceptance of our User Agreement and Privacy Policy.

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Why have I never got that before? Halfway through it myself Footnotes help you understand some ideas or concepts that may be old to understand. Literature of the World: Author of Aru Shah and the End of Time: A Pandava Novel Book 1.