Rhetorical Analysis Of This Is Water

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David Foster Wallace’s Commencement Speech “This is Water” was awesome and enjoyable to read. The first thing that drew my attention was how he stated it out with an anecdote” two young fish meet an older fish, who asks them “How’s the water?” The younger fish look at each other and say, “What the hell is water?” (Wallace 309). I think that by using anecdotes and expressive thoughts through first-hand experience, he conveys a personal, informal, yet direct tone in his speech. Although he uses the anecdote of the two fish he makes a point of telling the reader he isn’t nor does he want to be the wise old fish. The purpose of the anecdote was to state the most obvious which to me is the everyday and important realities are often the ones that are the hardest …show more content…
The voice allowed him to express himself freely and in his own way. To me Wallace had a strong voice that helped me understand his purpose , grabbed my attention, and he made me feel like he was talking to me. It reads like an informal conversation rather than a speech which really shows how down to earth he is. I also found that Wallace added a dry sense a humor in his speech to engage the audience. He uses exaggerated statements such as, “'Have a nice day” that are not meant to be taken literally (Wallace 311). He also uses imagery to evoke the senses and descriptive language to make the reader feel involved as seen in the quote, take your creepy flimsy plastic bags of groceries to your car through the crowded, bumpy, littery parking lot” (Wallace 311). His word choices and structure of writing are truly unique and inspiring. He uses a lot of adjectives to enhance his purpose and for an exaggerated effect as seen in the quote “fat, dead-eyed, over-made-up lady,” (Wallace 312). He is so direct and just says and writes how it feels and is so refreshing and relatable to me. Personally I think his sentences are witty, filled with metaphors and imagery which really engaged