This Is Water: Some Thoughts, Delivered on a Significant Occasion, about Living a Compassionate Life Hardcover – Apr 14 2009
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"David Foster Wallace's unbelievable graduation speech...will inspire you."―Daily Candy
"We read Wallace because he forces us to think. He makes us consider what's beneath us and around us--like water."―Alicia J. Rouverol, The Christian Science Monitor
"Think of it as The Last Lecture for intellectuals."―Time
"None of the cloudlessly sane and true things he had to say about life in 2005 are any less sane or true today...[This is Water] reminds us of [Wallace's] strength and goodness and decency--the parts of him the terrible master [the mind] could never defeat, and never will."―Tom Bissel, New York Times Book Review
"Striking...is [Wallace's] evocative insight and humor."―Mark Follman, Mother Jones
About the Author
David Foster Wallace was born in Ithaca, New York, in 1962 and raised in Illinois, where he was a regionally ranked junior tennis player. He received bachelor of arts degrees in philosophy and English from Amherst College and wrote what would become his first novel, The Broom of the System, as his senior English thesis. He received a masters of fine arts from University of Arizona in 1987 and briefly pursued graduate work in philosophy at Harvard University. His second novel, Infinite Jest, was published in 1996. Wallace taught creative writing at Emerson College, Illinois State University, and Pomona College, and published the story collections Girl with Curious Hair, Brief Interviews with Hideous Men, Oblivion, the essay collections A Supposedly Fun Thing I'll Never Do Again, and Consider the Lobster. He was awarded the MacArthur Fellowship, a Lannan Literary Award, and a Whiting Writers' Award, and was appointed to the Usage Panel for The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language. He died in 2008. His last novel, The Pale King, was published in 2011.
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The Best American Nonrequired Reading 2006 (The Best American Series) The actual speech is, by the way, brilliant and moving, which is what makes this edition all the more tragic. (5 *'s for the speech 1 * for the edition itself)
That may sound like hyperbole, or abstract nonsense.
That is being taught how to think.
There are piles of these stand-alone sentences that should have never stood alone. But even reading it in order, first page to last, leaves the sense of the thing messed with terribly. The cadence is as college students reading poetry in their coffee-house meetings. Why format the book in the way it's formatted? For sense? To pre-chew the speech and let me know what to think about it by breaking it up into parts that make an editor's points, not the speechmaker's? It's formatted this way so that it is stretched out to almost 140 pages that can bring in >$10.
This isn't even getting into the censorship of his original speech.
This is a shameful recasting of a fantastic speech. Shameful. For shame!
The most terrible thing is that we see a hint that, in death perhaps as in life, the people who were close to DWF clearly don't get it.
Do not buy this.