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Ethos In This Is Water By David Foster Wallace

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David Foster Wallace is an American writer. He spoke at the Kenyon Commencement Address in 2005, where he gave a speech to the graduating class of the year. David tells the graduates of Kenyon College what the true meaning of a liberal arts degree is, and how they should go about finding it. David Foster Wallace’s appeals to credibility, emotion and logical reasoning in his speech – “This Is Water” – to strengthen the idea that the meaning of education is learning how and what to think, independently. David Foster Wallace establishes credibility in his speech by expressing his experience in learning how to think. Ethos is a rhetorical appeal that uses credibility and experience to give an argument more strength. Within the beginning of the “This is Water” speech, David asserts his credibility to the audience by conveying that he too was a student, and that as a student, he disliked the idea that others had to teach him how to think (Wallace 1). Wallace begins with this statement to let the audience know that he knows that they do not want to be told how to think because he was a student just like them. As a student, David was stuck in his default setting because he was still being told how to think. If he wanted to escape his default setting, he would need to know how to think on his own. The speaker is now more credible than before because he was a student before. The graduates in the audience are more likely to listen to him now that they know that has experience in
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