44% OFF

#BLACKFRIDAY 12min - Get your career back on track!

Do not miss out on this opportunity! Grab a book and BOOST your learning routine.

12min
logo 12min

Start growing!

Boost your life and career with the best book summaries.

Start growing!

Boost your life and career with the best book summaries.

    logo 12min

    J.K. Rowling Harvard Commencement Speech Summary

    3 min read ⌚ 

    J.K. Rowling Harvard Commencement Speech SummaryHarvard University Commencement 2008

    J.K Rowling talks about things she wishes someone told her, back when she was a graduate.

    About J. K. Rowling

    J. K. Rowling K. Rowling is a bestselling novelist and a philanthropist, author of the Harry Potter series.

    “J.K. Rowling Harvard Commencement Speech Summary”

    There is no person on Earth that does not know about J. K. Rowling and her Harry Potter books.

    Most of the people that have heard of her know the tough life she had before she got her big break. Her rags to riches story serve as an inspiration for many people.

    Knowing that J. K. Rowling succeeded to transform from a single mom on the verge of bankruptcy to one of the wealthiest authors on the planet, gives her words complete credibility.

    When invited to give a commencement speech to Harvard graduates, she felt a huge responsibility to prepare a piece which would deliver words of wisdom that could guide the promising young generation.

    So, she decided to convey the lessons she learned the hard way, and advice she wished someone had given her when she was a graduate.

    She came up with two core lessons: appreciate the value of failing and recognize the importance of imagination.

    K. Rowling had studied modern languages and classics. While she was studying, she was not worried because she always did well on the exams, but as soon as she graduated, she started feeling fear that she will face failure.

    Everyone knew that her choice of education was not offering too many opportunities, and seven years later, this notion was reinforced by Rowling’s life.

    She was a single, unemployed divorcee living almost below the poverty line.

    However, the realization of her worse fear – freed her.

    She had just hit rock bottom, and there was no place to go but up.

    So, she gave up control of her life and decided to pursue the only thing that mattered: writing.

    Another thing that she considers important is imagination, and moreover – recognizing its power.

    One of her jobs after she finished college was in Amnesty International, where she was surrounded by stories of victims and torture and refugees.

    This made her perceive human evil, and at the same time, human kindness.

    People can empathize with others if they employ their imaginations and understand what those others are going through.

    And yet, many choose to stay blind to the unhappiness.

    According to Rowling, when you decide to do nothing for a situation, you allow it to continue.

    Hence, every human being is responsible for recognizing and developing his imagination, to create a better world.

    Key Lessons from “J.K. Rowling Harvard Commencement Speech”

    1.      Fearing the Future
    2.      Failure is Not Forever
    3.      Develop Your Imagination

    Fearing the Future

    As soon as Rowling graduated, she started feeling fear that she will face failure.

    Seven years later, the realization of her worse fear – freed her.

    Failure is Not Forever

    K. Rowling succeeded to transform from a single mom on the verge of bankruptcy to one of the wealthiest authors on the planet. Her rags to riches story proves to everyone that life can be turned around.

    Develop Your Imagination

    People can empathize with others if they employ their imaginations and understand what those others are going through.

    Every human being is responsible for recognizing and developing his imagination, to create a better world.

    Like this summary? We’d Like to invite you to download our free 12 min app, for more amazing summaries and audiobooks.

    “J.K. Rowling Harvard Commencement Speech” Quotes

    Some failure in life is inevitable. Click To Tweet 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. Click To Tweet Personal happiness lies in knowing that life is not a checklist of acquisition or achievement. Click To Tweet Your qualifications are not your life. Click To Tweet Imagination is not only the uniquely human capacity to envision that which is not and therefore the fount of all invention and innovation; it is the power that enables us to empathize with humans whose experiences we have never shared. Click To Tweet

    This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is S97jQHmAduTE-2W4hn5k-Oyzm6WGfZWR43av3dBG_Ln-GUxWcIDhTEpQcZXgggG5XRhhpT0CDC7aiNHa_wD80aP5ZWHyWRHVVrTGgZiYBRXQve5CDD1Yc8XC2lE5cVwczTvF3BFFenrlUuksMg

    Scroll to Top