David Foster Wallace explained why I feel so sick after presidential debates this year

In the wake of last night’s presidential debate, I feel somewhat ill at ease. I feel as though all the spin and commentary about the candidates’ performance is so rarified that it’s difficult for the average viewer to really understand the gravity of what they’d just witnessed. I have come to feel the same cool detachment to the event as the anchors wrangling the pundits, and I don’t like that feeling.

I found this really good video explaining David Foster Wallace’s influence on popular culture.

A staunch anti-postmodernist, DFW critiqued the irony and self-referentialism that pervaded pop culture in the 1980s and 1990s, and this video’s creator, Will Schoder, asserts that his thoughts influenced the development of the more sincere, less ironic post-pomo kind of television programming available today. (Think “Parks & Recreation,” “The Office,” etc.)

Regardless of which side of the political aisle we sit on, I’d hope we can all step back from the spin and attempt to really process what’s been said over the past 72 hours, to move past the commentary and let it all trickle into our emotional nooks and crannies. Whether it’s horror you feel, or sadness, schadenfreude, embarrassment, fear or even a kind of defensive and self-aggrandizing pride, take the time to feel that and step away from the news for a bit.

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