Kenyon College Commencement Speech Summary

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David Wallace Foster’s Kenyon College Commencement Speech is extremely successful for a multitude of reasons. It is not so much inspirational or revolutionary or epic, just simply honest. His speech is blunt about what people will face in their life after education. That adult life is boring, repetitive, trivial, tiring. Yet despite being adult life being unsatisfactory, Wallace always says it will only be those things because of your perspective. He shows his claims by using metaphors, scenarios, and most importantly, emotions. Wallace is frank, direct, and even a bit unkind but this makes his speech all the more relatable. It is successful because it is sympathized with and resonates within people since it makes them feel. Emotional appeal and trust play a key part in Wallace’s speech to have him establish a connection with his audience. He uses this to bring out emotions from his audience like guilt, he wants us to be ashamed of our self centered actions. to prove his point. Then during the second half of the speech he says it's okay to learn from our mistakes, and reassures his audience. Wallace wants the audience to understand his argument, and by using pathos, he has the means to deliver a heartfelt speech to …show more content…
His overall goal, by using metaphors and bluntness, is to challenge the audience into thinking outside their comfort zone and shift their perspective. Wallace begins by making them ashamed of their natural selfishness, this instills the idea of perspective. We, are the most important beings because we only think of things based on how they affect ourselves. But by empathizing with those around us we can become more open minded and increase our happiness. Wallace is upfront that life will suck sometimes but it can be all about how we choose to make the best or worst of our

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