User:AaronSw/David Foster Wallace nonfiction

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See also: User:AaronSw/David Foster Wallace fiction NEW!

I believe this list is basically comprehensive. If you have additions, let me know.

  • 1985: "Richard Taylor's 'Fatalism' and the Semantics of Physical Modality", Amherst Philosophy Thesis
  • [x] 1987: "Matters of Sense and Opacity", NYT letter (OCR PDF)
  • 1988: "Fictional Futures and the Conspicuously Young", Review of Contemporary Fiction (retypeset PDF)
  • [x] 1990: Signifying Rappers: Rap and Race in the Urban Present (with Mark Costello)
  • [x] 1990: "The Horror of Pretentiousness", Washington Post book review (retypeset PDF)
  • [x] 1990: "Fort Wayne is Seventh on Hitler's List", Harvard Book Review (PDF)
  • [x] 1990: "The Empty Plenum", Review of Contemporary Fiction book review (retypeset PDF)
  • [x] 1991: "Exploring Inner Space", Washington Post book review (retypeset PDF)
  • [x] 1991: "The Million-Dollar Tattoo", NYT book review (retypeset PDF)
  • [x] 1991: "Tragic Cuban Emigre and a Tale of 'The Door to Happiness'", Philadelphia Inquirer book review (retypeset PDF)
  • [x] 1991: "Presley as Paradigm", LAT book review (retypeset PDF)
  • [x] 1992: "Portrait of an Eye", Harvard Review book review (retypeset PDF)
  • [x] 1992: "Iris' Story: An Inversion of Philosophic Skepticism", Philadelphia Inquirer book review (retypeset PDF)
    • 1992: reprinted in Contemporary Literary Criticism (vol. 76)
  • 1992: "Tracy Austin's 'Beyond Center Court: My Story'", Philadelphia Inquirer book review
    • [x] 1994: reprinted in CTL as "How Tracy Austin Broke My Heart"
  • [x] 1990: "Derivative Sport in Tornado Alley", ASFTINDA
  • [x] 1990: "E Unibus Pluram: Television and U.S. Fiction", ASFTINDA
    • [x] 1993: printed (lightly edited and sans footnotes) in Review of Contemporary Fiction (PDF)
  • [x] 1993: "Getting Away from Already Being Pretty Much Away from It All", ASFTINDA
  • [x] 1992: "Greatly Exaggerated", ASFTINDA
    • 1992: printed as "'Morte d'Author: An Autopsy" in the Harvard Book Review
  • [x] 1996: "God Bless You, Mr. Franzen", Harper's letter (PDF)
  • [x] 1996: "Democracy and Commerce at the US Open", Tennis (included with NYTM) (PDF)
  • 1996: "Impediments to Passion", Might
    • [x] 1998: reprinted as "Hail The Returning Dragon, Clothed In New Fire" in Shiny Adidas Tracksuits and the Death of Camp and Other Essays from Might Magazine (PDF)
  • [x] 1996: "Quo Vadis - Introduction", Review of Contemporary Fiction (OCR PDF)
  • [x] 1995: "David Lynch Keeps His Head", ASFTINDA
    • 1996: printed (severely abbreviated) in Premiere (HTML)
  • [x] 1995: "Tennis Player Michael Joyce's Professional Artistry as a Paradigm of Certain Stuff about Choice, Freedom, Discipline, Joy, Grotesquerie, and Human Completeness", ASFTINDA
  • [x] 1995: "A Supposedly Fun Thing I'll Never Do Again", ASFTINDA
  • [x] 1996: "Joseph Frank's Dostoevsky", CTL
    • 1996: printed as "Feodor's Guide" in Voice Literary Supplement (book review)
  • [x] 1997: "John Updike, Champion Literary Phallocrat, Drops One; Is This Finally the End for Magnificent Narcissists?", New York Observer book review
    • [x] 1998: reprinted (edited) in CTL as "Certainly the End of Something or Other, One Would Sort of Have to Think: (Re John Updike's Towards the End of Time)"
  • [x] 1998: "Big Red Son", CTL
    • 1998: printed (abbreviated and bowdlerized) as "Neither Adult Nor Entertainment" in Premiere under the names Willem R. deGroot and Matt Rundlet
    • [x] see also: backstory from editor; AVN's response
  • [x] 1998: "The Nature of the Fun", Why I Write: Thoughts on the Craft of Fiction (Will Blythe, ed.)
    • [x] 1998: reprinted (with headings) in Fiction Writer (HTML)
  • [x] 1998: "F/X Porn", Waterstone's (PDF)
  • [x] 1998: "Laughing with Kafka", Harper's (PDF)
    • [x] 1999: reprinted (with different footnotes) in CTL as "Some Remarks on Kafka's Funniness from Which Probably Not Enough Has Been Removed"
  • [x] 1999: "Overlooked: Five Direly Underappreciated U.S. Novels >1960", Salon
  • [x] 1999: "100-word statement", Rolling Stone (retypeset PDF)
  • [x] 2000: "Rhetoric and the Math Melodrama", for Science book review (PDF)
    • [x] 2000: printed (heavily edited) in Science (B/W PDF)
      • [x] 2000: response to letter in response (PDF)
  • 2000: "The Weasel, Twelve Monkeys, and the Shrub", Rolling Stone
    • [x] 2000: reprinted (greatly expanded and with a preface) as Up, Simba!: 7 Days on the Trail of an Anticandidate
      • 2000: reprinted (verbatim) in CTL
        • [x] 2008: reprinted (with a foreword by Jacob Weisberg) as McCain's Promise: Aboard the Straight Talk Express with John McCain and a Whole Bunch of Actual Reporters, Thinking About Hope
  • [x] 1999: "Authority and American Usage[1]" in CTL
  • [x] 2001: "The Best of the Prose Poem", Rain Taxi book review (PDF)
  • [x] 2001: "The View from Mrs. Thompson's", CTL
    • 2001: printed (edited) in Rolling Stone
  • [x] 2003: Everything and More: A Compact History of ∞
  • [x] 2004: "Borges on the Couch", NYT book review (PDF)
  • [xs] 2004: "Word Note" (various), Oxford American Writer's Thesauraus (PDF selection)
  • [x] 2004: "Consider the Lobster", CTL
    • [x] 2004: printed (with slight edits and gruesome details removed) in Gourmet (PDF)
  • [x] 2005: "Kenyon Commencement Address"
    • [x] 2006: reprinted (revised and edited) in The Best American Nonrequired Reading 2006
      • [x] 2008: reprinted (severely abridged) in Wall Street Journal as "David Foster Wallace on Life and Work"
    • [x] 2009: reprinted as This Is Water: Some Thoughts, Delivered on a Significant Occasion, about Living a Compassionate Life
  • [x] 2005: "Host", CTL
    • [x] 2005: printed (abbreviated and in color) in The Atlantic
  • [x] 2006: "Federer as Religious Experience", NYTM: PLAY (B/W PDF)
  • [x] 2007: "Deciderization 2007 — a Special Report", introduction to The Best American Essays 2007 (reprint PDF)
  • [x] 2007: "Just Asking", The Atlantic
  • [x] 2006-2008: "It All Gets Quite Tricky", Harper's printing private correspondence


  • 1997: A Supposedly Fun Thing I'll Never Do Again (ASFTINDA)
  • 2005: Consider The Lobster (CTL)


Dates for entries in DFW collections are the dates printed after the piece in the collection. The other dates are publication dates. I'm listing the earliest dates first; when they're the same I list the version in a collection first, with the exception of Up, Simba! since the collected version references its magazine appearance and so obviously was written afterward.


(Footnote in original.)