David Foster Wallace’s “This is Water” Speech is Now a Beautiful Short Film (Video)

DFW’s famous commencement speech has been turned into a short film.


If you have never read or listened to any of the late David Foster Wallace’s writing, this is a great place to start.

It’s only nine minutes long and it’s one of those things that I include in my (not written down) life manifesto.

“This is Water” is a brilliant speech about life after college, the tedium of adulthood, and how we are supposed to handle it even though we are all outrageously stressed and annoyed sometimes.

This speech changed my life and now it can change yours in beautiful short film form.

[Via: THIS IS WATER – By David Foster Wallace from The Glossary on Vimeo]


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About Deanna Ogle

Deanna Ogle hails from the greater Detroit area and her work has appeared in The Good Men Project, The Printed Blog, and Provoketive Magazine. She is studying journalism and religious studies, and writes at her personal blog Soul like a Spider. Loves: carnations, iced espresso, and watching movies with her husband. Find her at Twitter, Google and Facebook.


  1. This just changed the course of my day and maybe even, just a little bit, the course of my life. Thank you so much for sharing this.

  2. I absolutely loved this when I first heard it (and I still do). It’s freaking awesome and a great call for empathy. Of course, the other message I took away form it was that it’s kind of messed up our society’s daily tedium is also so impersonal. Daily routine and tedious grind is perhaps inevitable…but the lack of facilitating connection to others is all socio-cultural.

    Oo also, the whole speech is awesome and totally worth a read: http://web.archive.org/web/20080213082423/http://www.marginalia.org/dfw_kenyon_commencement.html


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