by Joseph Tabbi
In life, William Gaddis was essentially a private man. In the spirit of New Criticism that he absorbed at Harvard in the 1940s, Gaddis simply felt that the work ought to be self-contained, semi-autonomous. The author shouldn’t have to “follow it around” telling people what he really meant, as Gaddis told more or less every interviewer who got him to talk, and many more whom he put off.
John Green could take a page from Gaddis’ book. But then again I sincerely do NOT want to see him attempting to imitate Gaddis. DFW for dummies is bad enough.