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This Is Water: The Original David Foster Wallace Recording | [David Foster Wallace]

This Is Water: The Original David Foster Wallace Recording

Only once did David Foster Wallace give a public talk on his views on life, during a commencement address given in 2005 at Kenyon College. This is the audio recording of David Foster Wallace delivering that very address. How does one keep from going through their comfortable, prosperous adult life unconsciously? How do we get ourselves out of the foreground of our thoughts and achieve compassion? The speech captures Wallace's electric intellect as well as his grace in attention to others.
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Publisher's Summary

Some Thoughts, Delivered on a Significant Occasion, about Living a Compassionate Life

Only once did David Foster Wallace give a public talk on his views on life, during a commencement address given in 2005 at Kenyon College. This is the audio recording of David Foster Wallace delivering that very address. How does one keep from going through their comfortable, prosperous adult life unconsciously? How do we get ourselves out of the foreground of our thoughts and achieve compassion? The speech captures Wallace's electric intellect as well as his grace in attention to others. After his death, it became a treasured piece of writing reprinted in The Wall Street Journal and the London Times, commented on endlessly in blogs, and emailed from friend to friend.

Writing with his one-of-a-kind blend of causal humor, exacting intellect, and practical philosophy, David Foster Wallace probes the challenges of daily living and offers advice that renews us with every listen.

©2005 David Foster Wallace (P)2010 Hachette

What Members Say

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4.6 (197 )
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Performance
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  •  
    John Nosal GREENSBURG, PA, US 10-09-12
    John Nosal GREENSBURG, PA, US 10-09-12 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "The MVP of my book/audio library"
    What made the experience of listening to This Is Water: The Original David Foster Wallace Recording the most enjoyable?

    I'm 61 years old. This is a distillation of most important lessons I've learned in my 35 year 'quest' for enlightenment, growth, self-improvement, etc.


    What was the most compelling aspect of this narrative?

    I can't say what was most compelling, but in this 23 minute audio I've placed 25 bookmarks.


    Any additional comments?

    Get this and listen to it. I try and listen to it at least once a day to remind me to "wake up!"

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    SHAWN MOUNTAIN VIEW, CA, United States 01-14-11
    SHAWN MOUNTAIN VIEW, CA, United States 01-14-11 Member Since 2002
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Cheap production quality"

    Why would the producers of this "audiobook" overlay loud music at the end so that you can barely make out what Wallace said but then lower the volume of the music when they read off the production credits? Maddening!!

    5 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Meghan JANESVILLE, WI, United States 11-17-11
    Meghan JANESVILLE, WI, United States 11-17-11 Member Since 2011

    Waiting for The Doctor.

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    "Very inspiring"

    I listen to this any time that I think that the world around me is so terrible and crashing down, or if I just need inspiration or motivation to do important things in my life. I love this speech. David Foster Wallace is missed, but he did wonderful things while he was here.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Stephen Marietta, GA, United States 05-01-13
    Stephen Marietta, GA, United States 05-01-13 Member Since 2012

    I have nothing to offer anyone except my own confusion.

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    "Guide to Life"
    Where does This Is Water: The Original David Foster Wallace Recording rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    It quite literally changed the way I thought.


    What did you like best about this story?

    To know (a) I wasn't the only one that spent entirely too much time trapped within his own head and (b) that, through effort, it can be overcome. That and to know DFW was well aware of his shortcomings, he embraced them and chose to use his strengths to look at the world through the eyes of those around him (which I've learned was his remarkable talent upon reading his various novels and collections after hearing this speech).


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sarah Fay 05-01-12
    Sarah Fay 05-01-12
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    "You must listen to this!"
    Would you listen to This Is Water: The Original David Foster Wallace Recording again? Why?

    David Foster Wallace is known for his novels and short stories, but he shines most in his nonfiction work. He was an exceptional journalist (download Consider the Lobster, which he reads as well) and, in a way, philosopher. This is an opportunity to hear one of our finest writers speak, even though he's no longer with us.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    EileenT Ridgewood, NY, United States 04-01-12
    EileenT Ridgewood, NY, United States 04-01-12
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    "No wasted words."
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    I go what I came for: his carefully chosen words in his own voice. Very moving, inspiring, and down to earth.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Andy Westport, CT, United States 02-25-11
    Andy Westport, CT, United States 02-25-11 Member Since 2002
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    "not inspiring"

    He starts out with a funny one liner, but not much after that. This recording may be better suited to a "right brain" thinker.

    0 of 9 people found this review helpful
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  • Doreen
    Dagenham, United Kingdom
    7/27/13
    Overall
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    "Wallace's words are inspired and down to earth."

    This speech is strikingly objective. What it is not is condescending repetitive or cliché. Wallace does not strive to give you good advise but to simple remind you to breathe, when it is all too simple to forget how to. If you're a David Foster Wallace fan, this is undoubtedly a gem to keep.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
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