Jk rowling graduation speech. The 5 key lessons of J.K. Rowling’s Harvard Speech 2022-10-24
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J.K. Rowling, the beloved author of the Harry Potter series, gave a powerful and inspiring graduation speech at Harvard University in 2008. In her speech, Rowling touches on the importance of failure, the power of imagination, and the value of hard work and determination.
One of the key themes of Rowling's speech is the importance of failure. She tells the graduates that it is through failure that we learn and grow, and that it is often through our failures that we find our true passions and calling in life. Rowling speaks from personal experience, as she struggled for years to get her Harry Potter books published, and faced numerous rejections before finally finding success. She encourages the graduates to embrace their failures and to see them as opportunities for growth and learning, rather than as setbacks.
Another key theme of Rowling's speech is the power of imagination. She tells the graduates that their imaginations are their most valuable asset, and that they should use it to dream big and to pursue their passions. She emphasizes the importance of creativity and originality, and encourages the graduates to follow their hearts and to trust in their own unique visions and ideas.
Finally, Rowling stresses the value of hard work and determination. She tells the graduates that they will face many challenges and obstacles in life, and that the key to overcoming these challenges is to work hard and to never give up. She encourages them to be resilient and to persevere, even when things seem difficult or impossible.
Overall, Rowling's graduation speech is a powerful and inspiring message for anyone, but particularly for young graduates who are embarking on a new chapter in their lives. It is a reminder to embrace failure, to use our imaginations, and to work hard and never give up, in order to achieve our goals and to live fulfilling and meaningful lives.
When was J.K. Rowling commencement speech?
I am nearly finished. We hope to cast a wide net — including politicians, business leaders, preachers, entertainers and philosophers. So they hoped that I would take a vocational degree; I wanted to study English Literature. My small participation in that process was one of the most humbling and inspiring experiences of my life. Looking back at the 21-year-old that I was at graduation, is a slightly uncomfortable experience for the 42-year-old that she has become. The moment you are old enough to take the wheel, responsibility lies with you. So why do I talk about the benefits of failure? There is an expiry date on blaming your parents for steering you in the wrong direction; the moment you are old enough to take the wheel, responsibility lies with you.
The first thing I would like to say is 'thank you. However, the fact that you are graduating from Harvard suggests that you are not very well-acquainted with failure. Its usage originated with students finishing their studies and being awarded a degree, thus commencing as bachelors or masters in a subject and enjoying new privileges within academia. And as you stand on the threshold of what is sometimes called real life, I want to extol the crucial importance of imagination. What is the purpose of a commencement? Rowling: We do not need magic to transform our world. In other words, her greatest fear had become a reality. Imagination is not only the uniquely human capacity to envision that which is not, and therefore the fount of all invention and innovation.
"The Fringe Benefits of Failure" by J.K. Rowling speech transcript
The friends with whom I sat on graduation day have been my friends for life. Such knowledge is a true gift, for all that it is painfully won, and it has been worth more than any qualification I ever earned. And I do not for a moment suppose that everyone here has enjoyed an existence of unruffled privilege and contentment. And tomorrow, I hope that even if you remember not a single word of mine, you remember those of Seneca, another of those old Romans I met when I fled down the classics corridor in retreat from career ladders in search of ancient wisdom. Other people will try to influence you When J.
Delivering a commencement address is a great responsibility; or so I thought until I cast my mind back to my own graduation. I wish you all very good lives. One of the greatest formative experiences of my life preceded Harry Potter, though it informed much of what I subsequently wrote in those books. There is an expiry date on blaming your parents for steering you in the wrong direction; the moment you are old enough to take the wheel, responsibility lies with you. I saw photographs of those who had disappeared without trace, sent to Amnesty by their desperate families and friends.
It is impossible to live without failing at something, unless you live so cautiously that you might as well not have lived at all — in which case, you fail by default. I might be tempted to envy people who can live that way, except that I do not think they have any fewer nightmares than I do. At your age, in spite of a distinct lack of motivation at university, where I had spent far too long in the coffee bar writing stories, and far too little time at lectures, I had a knack for passing examinations and that for years had been the measure of success in my life and that of my peers. I am not dull enough to suppose that because you are young, gifted, and well-educated, you have never known hardship or heartbreak. This liberating discovery enables me to proceed without any fear that I might inadvertently influence you to abandon promising careers in business, the law, or politics for the giddy delights of becoming a gay wizard. Failure taught me things about myself that I could have learned no other way.
5 Lessons We Can All Learn From J.K. Rowling's Harvard Commencement Speech
Now, I am not going to stand here and tell you that failure is fun. The commencement speaker that day was the distinguished British philosopher Baroness Mary Warnock. Poverty entails fear, and stress, and sometimes depression; it means a thousand petty humiliations and hardships. What is more, I cannot criticise my parents for hoping that I would never experience poverty. I was set free because my greatest fear had been realized and I was still alive. Now, I am not going to stand here and tell you that failure is fun.
J.K. Rowling Graduation Speech at Harvard University
Actually, I have wracked my mind and heart for what I ought to say to you today. One might use such an ability to manipulate, or control, just as much as to understand or sympathize. Even your nationality sets you apart. K Rowling talks about things she wishes someone told her, back when she was a graduate. Now, I am not going to stand here and tell you that failure is fun.
Even your nationality sets you apart. Of course, this is a power like my brand of fictional magic that is morally neutral. Of all subjects on this planet, I think they would have been hard put to name one less useful than Greek mythology when it came to securing the keys to an executive bathroom. People who had been displaced from their homes or fled into exile because they had the temerity to speak against their governments. The way you vote, the way you live, the way you protest, the pressure you bring to bear on your government, has an impact way beyond your borders. Unlike any other creature on this planet, humans can learn and understand, without having experienced. And as long as I live, I shall remember walking along an empty corridor and suddenly hearing from behind a closed door, a scream of pain and horror such as I have never heard since.
The 5 key lessons of J.K. Rowling’s Harvard Speech
And as you stand on the threshold of what is sometimes called 'real life', I want to extol the crucial importance of imagination. I discovered that I had a strong will and more discipline than I had suspected; I also found out that I had friends whose value was truly above the price of rubies. I am nearly finished. Many of my co-workers were ex-political prisoners, people who had been displaced from their homes or fled into exile because they had the temerity to speak against their governments. This revelation came in the form of one of my earliest day jobs. Half my lifetime ago, I was striking an uneasy balance between the ambition I had for myself, and what those closest to me expected of me. I was convinced that the only thing I wanted to do, ever, was to write novels.
Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling's 2008 Harvard Commencement address
And yet I also learned more about human goodness at Amnesty International than I had ever known before. We do not need magic to change the world; we carry all the power we need inside ourselves already: we have the power to imagine better. I cannot remember telling my parents that I was studying Classics; they might well have found out for the first time on graduation day. That is an astonishing statement and yet proven a thousand times every day of our lives. If you have a gift, talent, dream— pursue it. Choosing to live in narrow spaces leads to a form of mental agoraphobia, and that brings its own terrors.