This video is just as amazing as the speech itself. It’s so well-done. It captures the best parts of the speech and visually conveys the stories that Wallace paints with cerebral brilliance.
It isn’t the usual trite hyperbole that most commencement speeches become. Instead, it seriously tries to have a heart to heart conversation with students about what lies ahead of them as they prepare to embark on their journey into oblivion.
Wallace nails the tediousness and brain-numbing boredom that comes from the daily routines that everyone must endure. However, he doesn’t do it in a depressing manner, ironic due to the fact that he dealt with depression for most of his life and ultimately committed suicide in 2008 at the age of 46 most likely as a result of depression and the medication he took for it. Despite his eventual tragic end, or perhaps because of it, this speech is a majestic work of art (David would wince about now if he heard this). It is a life-changing experience that you will never forget. I know I never will, just like when I first experienced the amazing piece by Mary Schmich entitled “Advice, like youth, probably just wasted on the young” which became a sensation in Baz Lurhman’s song/video “Wear Sunscreen“.
Here is the full speech
Here’s a slew of videos involving David Foster Wallace including a wonderful one with Charlie Rose.