The 100 Best Magazine Articles Ever: An Ongoing Collaborative List [UPDATED] The 100 Best Magazine Articles Ever: An Ongoing Collaborative List [UPDATED]
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The 100 Best Magazine Articles Ever: An Ongoing Collaborative List [UPDATED]

by Patrick James

August 1, 2010
Kevin Kelly just posted suggestions for the 100 best long-form magazine articles ever written (in English). Here are the top five so far (those that have been suggested the most):

****** David Foster Wallace, "Federer As Religious Experience." The New York Times, Play Magazine, August 20, 2006.

***** David Foster Wallace, "Consider the Lobster." Gourmet Magazine, Aug 2004.

***** Neal Stephenson, "Mother Earth, Mother Board: Wiring the Planet." Wired, December 1996. On laying trans-oceanic fiber optic cable.

***** Gay Talese, "Frank Sinatra Has a Cold." Esquire, April 1966.

**** Ron Rosenbaum, "Secrets of the Little Blue Box." Esquire, October 1971. The first and best account of telephone hackers, more amazing than you might believe.

**** Jon Krakauer, "Death of an Innocent: How Christopher McCandless Lost His Way in the Wilds." Outside Magazine, January 1993. Article that became Into the Wild.

Kelly says the already impressive list is a work in progress, meaning that you can email him if you feel there's been some tragic omission. As it stands, the pieces on the list that I have read are outstanding—and I'm eager to read those I haven't. It looks like there's a link to every article, which means I have a lot of reading to do.

Oh, and as with our 51 Best Magazines of All Time, the term "ever" is used loosely.

UPDATE: I initially failed to mention that Peter Alsop's excellent story "Fin: The Last Days of Fish" from GOOD 012 made the list.

Via Boing Boing

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The 100 Best Magazine Articles Ever: An Ongoing Collaborative List [UPDATED]