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This Is Water  By  cover art

This Is Water

By: David Foster Wallace
Narrated by: Amy Wallace-Havens
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Publisher's summary

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

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?

This audiobook version of a David Foster Wallace commencement speech, read by his sister, Amy Wallace-Havens, captures his 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 reading.

©2009 David Foster Wallace Literary Trust (P)2009 David Foster Wallace Literary Trust

What listeners say about This Is Water

Average customer ratings
Overall
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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars

Too short for what you pay for!

Make no mistake, the speech itself was profound, heart spoken and brilliant. Basically the message is, mindful self-awareness leads to love, compassion and eventually a happy life. Very similar to the core values of Buddhism but described in a funny, light hearted and down to earth manner. The only problem here is that for only 24 Mins this speech is NOT WORTH $7! In fact you can get the whole transcript of this speech online FREE by simply doing a google search (I only found about it after I purchased the audiobook). Perhaps 2$ would have been a much more reasonable price.

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37 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars

DFW is not the reader!

I was so excited to find this, I neglected to check to make sure the author was the one actually reading. I mean, it was a speech he gave, and I have heard bits of the audio before so I just assumed. sigh.
His sister does a goof job reading, I was just really disappointed it wasn't the full audio from the speech.

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1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Default thinking

This little snippet from Mr Wallace is well worth a listen. It will give you something to think about.

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Would have preferred a recording of his speech

Basically Wallace is restating Plato’s dictum of the importance of self-knowledge as the key to making life worth living. Both Plato and Wallace are offering good advice to a group of arrogant self-congratulating graduates convinced of their own intellectual mastery. Four Stars for the reminder. ****

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

title

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....

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

The emotional attachment to his experience!

He thought of the life to the broadest capacity. His commencement speech was emotionally charged my curiosity; my experience struck a chord, treasure each occasion.

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  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

23 minutes!

What disappointed you about This Is Water?

23 minutes does not equate to one full credit. Bought this on my phone on Amazon.com so didn't realize it was so short/

Has This Is Water turned you off from other books in this genre?

no

Would you be willing to try another one of Amy Wallace-Havens’s performances?

no

If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from This Is Water?

not long enough to edit

Any additional comments?

rip-off

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  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Beware this isnt in his voice

What would have made This Is Water better?

First time using audible and was so excited to get a copy of this speech I didn't realize it wasnt done in his voice - the voice I listened to online. I do not like the womans voice - I wanted to hear this in the voice of the man I heard online. So beware and also I thought this was a longer version and it doesn't appear to be anything more then the same version read by some woman. Not sure why they took a verbal speech - converted it to text then hired some woman to read it. Why not just make the original speech in his voice available for download? I feel like I was just robbed for ten bucks. Really disappointed.

How did the narrator detract from the book?

wasnt the voice of the original speaker

Any additional comments?

Why take a verbal speech - convert it to text then hire some woman to read it?

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  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars

puzzling

The content of this commencement speech was totally over my head. While I understood the profanity, the rest of it did not resonate.

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