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Author David Foster Wallace Found Dead at Claremont Home

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DFW at a 2006 Reading | Photo by Steve Rhodes via Flickr

David Foster Wallace, formidable literary talent and sharp-eyed cultural critic, was found dead in his Claremont home at 9:30pm on Friday night. He will be sorely missed.

Wallace received a "genius grant" from the MacArthur Foundation in 1997 and taught writing at several institutions over the years, most recently at Pomona College.

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Wallace is mostly known for his sprawling and ambitious novel Infiinite Jest and won praise from critics and devotees for his darkly funny, deeply serious work in The Broom of the System, Girl with Curious Hair, Brief Interviews with Hideous Men (recently adapted for film by Wallace & Jon Krasinski) and Oblivion. The title essay of the collection A Supposedly Fun Thing I'll Never Do Again is one of the funniest essays we've ever read and we implore anyone wishing to celebrate Wallace's wit and talent to read it at once.

Wallace's keen ability to cut through the noise of politics and get at the truth was not only seen in his well-known works, but in a much-touted commencement speech at Keynon, in the searing moments-after-9/11 essay "The View from Mrs. Thompson's" in his Consider the Lobster collection and in his trip aboard McCain's "straight talk express" in February 2000, captured with unflinching honesty in McCain's Promise.

The loss of Wallace is a blow to the literary community and readers, writers, and fans everywhere will surely mourn his loss.