David Shields (he/him/his)

Headshot of David Shields

Contact Information

PDL A414


B.A., (magna cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa), Brown University, 1978
MFA, (Honors in Fiction), University of Iowa, 1980

Professional Affiliations

PEN, Authors League, Writers Guild of America, Poets & Writers, Associated Writing Programs, MLA

Areas of Interest

Literary collage, lyric essay, personal essay, book-length essay, boundary-jumping work

Research interests

David Shields is the internationally bestselling author of twenty-four books, including Reality Hunger (which, in 2020, Lit Hub named one of the most important books of the past decade), The Thing About Life Is That One Day You’ll Be Dead (New York Times bestseller), Black Planet: Facing Race During an NBA Season  (finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award and PEN USA Award), Remote: Reflections on Life in the Shadow of Celebrity (PEN/Revson Award), and Other People: Takes & Mistakes (NYTBR Editors’ Choice). The Very Last Interview was published by New York Review Books in 2022.

The recipient of a Guggenheim fellowship and two NEA fellowships, Shields—a senior contributing editor of Conjunctions—has published essays and stories in the New York Times Magazine, Harper’s, EsquireYale ReviewSalonSlateTin HouseA Public Space, McSweeney’s, Believer, Huffington PostLos Angeles Review of Books, and Best American Essays.

His work has been translated into two dozen languages.

The film adaptation of I Think You’re Totally Wrong: A Quarrel, which Shields co-wrote and co-stars in, was released in 2017 (available on Vudu). Shields wrote, produced, and directed Lynch: A History, a 2019 documentary about Marshawn Lynch’s use of silence, echo, and mimicry as key tools of resistance (available on Sundance, AMC, Amazon, Peacock, Apple TV+,  Peacock, and Tubi). I’ll Show You Mine, a feature film that Shields co-wrote and was produced by Mark and Jay Duplass, is being released theatrically nation-wide and distributed digitally across multiple platforms in June 2023. A new film, How We Got Here, which Shields wrote and directed and which argues that Melville + Nietzsche ÷ (Allan)  √ Bloom × Žižek2 = Bannon, is forthcoming from Sublation Media in January 2024, as is the companion volume of the same name.


Selected Research

Courses Taught


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