- Audible Audio Edition
- Listening Length: 23 minutes
- Program Type: Audiobook
- Version: Unabridged
- Publisher: Hachette Audio
- Audible.com Release Date: April 8, 2009
- Whispersync for Voice: Ready
- Language: English
- ASIN: B0026N9M08
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank:
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This Is Water Audible – Unabridged
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Top Customer Reviews
A well-documented and easily Google-able text, entire speech, on the internet.
And now, for those that require hardcover or digital books to slow down their reading, to create "atmosphere" in order to better appreciate the words of Mr. Wallace, there is this book, with one or two lines per page, 140+ pages, hardbound, for your pleasure. Like reading a fortune cookie, one might read a page a day to savor the zeal of the graduation speech. Conversely, one could sit and read the entire book in less than the time it took David to say it, aloud, at Kenyon College. The extremes are allowed by this book.
I pity those that say they enjoy the speech broken into a few words per page to allow them to "slow down" and "appreciate the words". They must be ones to take ten dollars each day out of an ATM machine to control their spending. Perhaps these same people eat with a miniature fork to better enjoy food.
For the rest of us, who have self-control, the question is not of expense (this book is, unquestionably, the most expensive method for taking in this speech--the others are free); not of efficiency (the work being so short, we all have the time); not of pretty, bound baubles with eventually yellowing pages, broken-glue bindings and housing silverfish while aging on a sagging bookshelf (the bibliomaniacs among us will cringe); but of how best to take in the message. How best to connect with the author's intent.
Do newsroom soundbites reflect the context of a Presidential speech? Would Twitter's 140-character tweets do justice to the Gettysburg Address? Sadly, the answer is that the true context of words is held in the sentences in which they are homed; those sentences next dwell in paragraphs; paragraphs build themes.
And the overall message is lost in shattering a flowing speech into publisher-determined, bite-sized "nibbles", like smashed M&Ms that will leave one licking their fingers to get the last crumbs of chocolate from the bottom of the candy dish.
David Wallace, whether in Jest, King, Broom, or any of his essays and shorts, is best kept whole--the way he demanded it. The enforcer, Mr. Wallace was, of leaving things as he intended them. Only with a fight would he cut pages, re-work styles, or even change punctuation; the fragmentation of a monumental speech would be disallowed by the author. This is evident in any profile of Mr. Wallace, and in particular the DT Max biography (which is money much better spent if one wishes to "know" this author) Every Love Story Is a Ghost Story: A Life of David Foster Wallace
To hear David's words, from his mouth, with his intonation and inflections, is priceless. Fortunately, that speech is archived elsewhere, as ubiquitous as butterflies in the springtime. And, best of all, it's free.
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)