In G.O.D. We Trust: The Desert of the Religious in The Broom of the System

Document Type

Book Chapter

Publication Date


Department 1

Interdisciplinary Studies

Department 2

Judaic Studies


In this book chapter, I explore the role of the Great Ohio Desert (G.O.D.) in David Foster Wallace's first novel, The Broom of the System. While most scholars see this as nothing more than a playful acronym, I argue that the notion of God as a desert provides helpful insight into Wallace's understanding of the religious. I use Søren Kierkegaard's concept of faith, (relatively unexplored in Wallace scholarship) to flesh this out.



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