We started the week expecting to publish one David Foster Wallace post . Then, because of the 50th birthday celebration, it turned into two . And now three. We spent some time tracking down free DFW stories and essays available on the web, and they're all now listed in our collection, 800 Free eBooks for iPad, Kindle & Other Devices . But we didn't want them to escape your attention. So here they are -- 23 pieces published by David Foster Wallace between 1989 and 2011, mostly in major . publications like The New Yorker , Harper's , The Atlantic , and The Paris Review . Enjoy, and don't miss our other collections of free writings by Philip K. Dick and Neil Gaiman .
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Second, you may want to propose student projects to try this themselves. Two models come to mind. You could bring some fragments of a past social world (photos, everyday tools, items of clothing, religious paraphernalia) into class and ask students to imagine what those fragments might mean. Alternatively, you might ask the students to gather some evidence themselves. Students might work in teams, each of which could focus on a particular social and cultural community from a particular period. Some of the students could collect objects that relate to this community. Some might also interview an elderly person from that community. Each student should keep a record of the process of discovery, a “field journal” detailing what clues were discovered, and, in the case of an interview, what the process of selecting the person, getting permission, and talking to the person was like. What issues came up in the process itself? How are they putting clues together? The team could organize a poster presenting the social world of that community, in the period of time they have chosen, and the clues they used to learn about it. Or the team might create a 5-minute i-movie to present the project.