×

Uh-oh, it looks like your Internet Explorer is out of date.

For a better shopping experience, please upgrade now.

If This Isn't Nice, What Is?: Advice for the Young
     

If This Isn't Nice, What Is?: Advice for the Young

by Kurt Vonnegut, Dan Wakefield (Introduction)
 

See All Formats & Editions

A collection of graduation speeches by acclaimed author Kurt Vonnegut, offering his heartfelt and humourous addvice for young people about to enter the world.

After the publication of his novel Slaughterhouse-Five brought him worldwide acclaim in 1969, Kurt Vonnegut became one of America's most popular graduation speakers. There were years when public

Overview

A collection of graduation speeches by acclaimed author Kurt Vonnegut, offering his heartfelt and humourous addvice for young people about to enter the world.

After the publication of his novel Slaughterhouse-Five brought him worldwide acclaim in 1969, Kurt Vonnegut became one of America's most popular graduation speakers. There were years when public speaking was his main source of income, and he put a great deal of thought and preparation into the things he said and also in his presentations. "We are performing animals" is one of Vonnegut's trademark sayings, and he took it to heart when he found himself before an auditorium filled with college seniors about to enter the world as members of the citizenry, hopeful of being gainfully employed, adults with their school days now finally behind them.

Vonnegut was a very, very funny graduation speaker. At the same time, he conveys in these speeches something of the seriousness, of the momentousness of life too. He tells stories and jokes, invokes the figures who inspire him the most–Jesus, Eugene Debs, Bertrand Russell, Jazz historian Albert Murray, and Vonnegut's friend Joseph Heller among many others. Perhaps most importantly, he acts like the young people he is speaking to are going to go out into the world and make a difference. 

These nine college commencement addresses have never been collected before in a book. Together, they show us a side of Vonnegut–personable, brave, provocative, intimate, loving–that is consistent with but different from the Vonnegut of his books. A bit like Mark Twain, also a noted public speaker, folksy, an actor as well as a writer.  

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780795333767
Publisher:
RosettaBooks
Publication date:
04/30/2013
Pages:
118
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.28(d)

Meet the Author

Kurt Vonnegut is a unique voice in the American canon — a writer whose works are hard to categorize, often straddling the space between literature and science fiction, and filled with cutting satire and dark humor. Like Mark Twain before him, Vonnegut's reputation and impact on American writing and reading will continue to grow steadily and increase in relevance as new insights are made.

Vonnegut was born in 1922 in Indianapolis, and studied at the University of Chicago and the University of Tennessee. In the Second World War, he became a German prisoner of war and was present during the bombing of Dresden. This experience provided inspiration for his most successful and influential novel, Slaughterhouse-Five. Vonnegut — admired as much for his views and his “Vonnegutisms” as for his publications — wrote extensively in many forms, including novels, short stories, essays, plays, articles, speeches, and correspondence, some of which was published posthumously.

Brief Biography

Date of Birth:
November 11, 1922
Date of Death:
April 11, 2007
Place of Birth:
Indianapolis, Indiana
Place of Death:
New York, New York
Education:
Cornell University, 1940-42; Carnegie-Mellon University, 1943; University of Chicago, 1945-47; M.A., 1971

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Post to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews