Thursday, July 11, 2019

DFW19: Wallace, Wittgenstein, and Religion

Nan Denette and Michele Ragno
Moderator: Vernon Cisney
Saturday, June 29, 2019, 9:00 AM — 9:50 AM

Nan Denette - Everybody Worships: Religious and Para-Religious Experience in Infinite Jest

Master’s Student — University of Chicago

This project examines instances of worship, devotion, religion, and spirituality in the narrative of Infinite Jest. In reading this novel through the lens of religion, questions are raised concerning what it means for fictional texts to engage with religious topics, and how Wallace portrays religion in a post-modern, secular world.

Nan Denette is an MA student in Religious Studies at the University of Chicago with a concentration in religion, literature, and visual culture. She has a BA from the College of Wooster in Religious Studies and English Literature. Her academic work focuses on intersections of religion, literature, and American culture.


Michele Ragno (Skype) - Wittgenstein and Wallace: Religion as a “Form of Life”

Undergraduate Student — Università Aldo Moro di Bari

The purpose of this paper is to meditate on the concept of religion proposed by Wallace and Wittgenstein. After showing both how religion influenced Wittgenstein’s personal life and how he deals with this matter in the Tractatus logico-philosophicus, the paper draws a comparison between David Foster Wallace and his education.

Michele Ragno is a Philosophy student at Aldo Moro University. His areas of interest include the reconstruction of the philosophical education of David Foster Wallace and the Philosophy of Art as an opening to the sense of Being in Wittgenstein and Heidegger. He wrote the book “David Foster Wallace. Uno spirito che pesa un macigno", which will be released in June 2019 for AM Edizioni.

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