David Foster Wallace’s widow, Karen Green, speaks about his suicide

A full post will be coming soon….  In the meantime, don’t miss this wonderful interview with David Foster Wallace’s widow, artist Karen Green, in The Observer, a major Sunday paper in Britain (“Karen Green: ‘David Foster Wallace’s suicide turned him into a “celebrity writer dude”, which would have made him wince‘”).  Tim Adams, the interviewer, does an adept job of avoiding romanticizing or sensationalizing suicide, and Karen Green speaks with painful candor about not only Wallace’s depression but also the legacy of suicide.

“Green has been much concerned with language, and the point where it gives up its ghosts of meaning. ‘When the person you love kills himself time stops,’ she says at one point. ‘It just stops at that moment. Life becomes another code, a language that you don’t understand.’ ”

“It’s tempting to see all this layering [in Green’s art] as a painstaking effort on Green’s part to understand her husband’s death, but it’s clear she sees it more as an expression of the absence of meaning that has resulted from it, the wild and whirling words of grief. She resists the idea that suicide is in any sense a meaningful act, still less one understandable in terms of art – the myth of the romantic depressive – as many of the multitude of commentators on Wallace’s death, grouping him with Kurt Cobain, have sometimes wanted to see it.”

Adams excellently crafts his profile, presenting the depth of Wallace’s struggles with depression and the havoc and deep pain his suicide has left for his wife and others.

Though the piece is long, it is well worth reading to the end.  My upcoming post on grief (delayed in part because of thoughts about endings in respect to the subject of suicide) should be up in the next day or two.

~  Stop by the mini-blog at karakrauze.tumblr.com too….  ~

About Kara Krauze

http://karakrauze.com Kara Krauze is a writer, consultant, and educator. Kara has worked in publishing, financial services, the mental health field, and community organizing. Her essays have been published in Quarterly West, Center: A Journal of the Literary Arts, Highbrow Magazine, the Los Angeles Review of Books, and elsewhere. She has a B.A. from Vassar College in International Studies and a M.A. in Literary Cultures from New York University. She has participated in workshops in New York City, Prague, and France, studied in Moscow and lived in London. Her writing, including a memoir and novels, engages with the subjects of war, loss, and memory. She grew up in Ohio and currently lives in New York City. Kara founded Voices From War, offering writing workshops for veterans, in 2013. http://VoicesFromWar.org
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