Plights of mind and circumstance: Cavell and Wallace on scepticism

2020-05-27T14:44:22Z (GMT) by Paul Jenner
My chapter argues that Stanley Cavell’s work on Wittgenstein and on scepticism provides fresh perspectives on the preoccupation with interiority found in David Foster Wallace’s writings. Through a close reading of Wallace’s short story, “Good Old Neon”, I show how Cavell’s reinterpretation of scepticism in terms of acknowledgement helps to foreground questions of separateness and voice underlying Wallace’s concern with interiority. Seen in this light, such concern does not reflect a misunderstanding of Wittgenstein on Wallace’s part, nor does it articulate a settled epistemological scepticism.