This Is Water
The Main Idea of the Speech
David Foster Wallace offered a commencement speech in the spring of 2005 at Kenyon College which soon went viral over the internet against intellectual arrogance and the need to exercise self control over how individuals think and what they think (Wallace, 2005). Wallace began his speech by a parable;
According to Wallace, there are two young fish swimming, and they happened to meet another older fish also swimming towards another direction. The fish nodded at the two small fish and said,” Morning, boys. How is the water?” As the two young fish swim, one eventually asks the other,” What the hell is water?”
Wallace in his last sentence expresses a banal platitude of which he alleges that platitudes in this manner can be of significant importance (Wallace, 2005). In as much as I wouldn’t want to infer this as the theme, but Wallace’s point stands at the important realities being the hardest to see and talk about. This remains the central theme in Wallace’s address.
The Purpose and Value Liberal Arts Education
Wallace points out a number of truths in connection with the liberal arts education and its meaning and explains the reasons why the degrees yet to be received have actual human value as compared to a material payoff. In other words, he views the larger culture as a continuing force that sees the University Education simply as a means to attain a job prospect (Wallace, 2005). Wallace in addition to this also alludes that education is not all about filling the minds of individuals with the knowledge but is in teaching people how to apply the prospects of thinking systematically. Thinking according to him is not only about the capacity but the choice of what to think and believe.
I totally concur with Wallace’s school of thought considering the fact that he emphasizes on the value of liberal arts as an avenue that teaches how to think. He adds on the...