In 2005, author David Foster Wallace was asked to give the commencement address to the 2005 graduating class of Kenyon College. However, the resulting speech didn’t become widely known until 3 years later, after his tragic death. It is, without a doubt, some of the best life advice we’ve ever come across, and perhaps the most simple and elegant explanation of the real value of education.

THIS IS WATER – By David Foster Wallace from The Glossary on Vimeo.

We made this video, built around an abridged version of the original audio recording, with the hopes that the core message of the speech could reach a wider audience who might not have otherwise been interested.

Category: Philosophy, Video

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9 Responses to “David Foster Wallace: This is Water”

  1. WallaWalla says:

    awesome stuff,

    thanks for posting!

  2. VennData says:

    Oh the other hand you can hate, seethe and be so sure of yourself among the like-minded folks that are so sure of themselves, telling you things that dovetail right there with your immediate financial interests, that you actually harm yourself, without knowing it, because you haven’t really thought it through.

  3. MikeNY says:

    Brilliant, as DFW obviously was. With a heavy flavor of Wittgenstein, who was one of DFW’s idols.

    I’ve always been sad about his suicide; this piece makes makes me perplexed, too.

  4. chartist says:

    When I first started my career, nearly 30 years ago, I worked with an older colleague who told me that the only thing we have control over is how we feel about the events around us. Intuitively I knew he was right but I also knew that I never thought about that before he said it.

  5. jelley says:

    Thank you for sharing this video.

  6. bouraq says:

    This video took me to different levels of self awareness and shook me. Inspiring indeed. Thanks for sharing.

  7. boveri says:

    With the right drug one we can have some control over how we feel about the events around us if we’re not otherwise ever pleased with our feelings.

  8. jimmerson says:

    This is brilliant and profound. So simple that it is staggering. DFW was a genius. His work, incl Infinite Jest, was on a higher plane. Thanks for sharing this.