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Welcome to the The Broom of the System WikiEdit

This wiki site aims to catalog the characters, stories, connections, references, history, and more of the book The Broom of the System (1987), the first novel by David Foster Wallace (1962 - 2008).

"The fundamental fact here is that we lay down rules, a technique, for a game, and that when we then follow the rules, things do not turn out as we had assumed. That we are therefore, as it were, entangled in our own rules.

The entanglement in our rules is what we want to understand."

- Ludwig Wittgenstein, Philosophical Investigations (trans. G. E. M. Anscombe)

The novelEdit

David Foster Wallace wrote The Broom of the System as one of his two theses at Amherst College, where he majored in English and philosophy. The book was published in 1987 by Viking Press.

It takes place in 1990, following Lenore Beadsman, a young woman who begins to question her reality when her great-grandmother passes on Wittgenstein's philosophies of language.

Lenore is caught up in a series of strange coincidences — involving everyone from her family, to her manic boyfriend, to her pet cockatiel — when her great-grandmother goes missing.

The wikiEdit

Currently, the entries on this wiki aim to classify: