Fareed Zakaria Wrote a Commencement Speech So Nice, He Gave It Twice

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Maybe this is a form of recycling? According to The Boston Globe's Mary Carmichael, CNN host and Newsweek columnist Fareed Zakaria gave strikingly similar commencement speeches to Duke and Harvard graduates within 11 days of each other. "I spoke to him while he was here," a Duke employee told Carmichael, "and I got the strong impression from him that his Harvard speech would be a different presentation. Oh, well, at least Duke got it first."

You can actually read and watch both speeches (here and here). In comparing them you'll find Zakaria touches upon the same anecdotes, jokes, and at times even uses the the same word-for-word phrasing, ("... profoundly at peace"; "... more computing power than the Apollo space capsule," etc.)

"Those are students from two very similar institutions graduating within two weeks of each other," Zakaria told Carmichael. "I don’t see how I could have come up with two completely different speeches without giving one group a second-rate talk. I’d rather come up with the same important message I think they need to hear." 

This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.