The Howling Fantods

David Foster Wallace News and Resources Since March 97

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DFW's Self-Help Books No Longer in Archive

Update:  Joe Gross' article for confirms the access change at the Harry Ransom Center, Ransom Center restricts part of Wallace archive (8/9/11):
"The restricted items contain annotations with sensitive, private information about members of the family, and the materials will remain restricted during the lifetimes of the specific individuals affected," Ransom Center public affairs director Jen Tisdale said."

It looks as though the self-help books in the David Foster Wallace archive at the Harry Ransom Centre are no longer available.
I'm not at all surprised by this, and like some other people out there I'm actually surprised it didn't happen earlier. From one of the comments in the article above:
Those self-help books had intimate commentary on living persons. They should not have been publicly released until those persons were no longer living. I believe this was an oversight and they made the right call here. I don't fault Maria for writing the piece, but I think this outcome was predictable after its publication. (Although I'm surprised it took this long.)
And this is really the crux of the matter, the privacy of people mentioned in Wallace's annotations. 
If it has to be a choice between an archive of Wallace's annotated personal library with some texts excluded, or no personal library at all, I know which option I prefer.
Last Updated on Friday, 09 September 2011 13:22