#DailyInspiration | 15 TED talks by women that’d make your day!

#DailyInspiration | 15 TED talks by women that’d make your day!

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1. Magical houses, made of bamboo | by Elora Hardy:
About the speaker: Growing up in Bali with two artist parents, Elora Hardy’s creativity led her to design prints for one of New York’s biggest fashion houses. Then, in a dramatic shift, she moved back home and founded Ibuku, a team that builds bespoke homes made and furnished almost entirely of bamboo.

About the talk: You’ve never seen buildings like this. The stunning bamboo homes built by Elora Hardy and her team in Bali twist, curve and surprise at every turn. They defy convention because the bamboo itself is so enigmatic. No two poles of bamboo are alike, so every home, bridge and bathroom is exquisitely unique. In this beautiful, immersive talk, she shares the potential of bamboo, as both a sustainable resource and a spark for the imagination.

2. Why we have too few women leaders– Sheryl Sandberg
As the COO at the helm of Facebook, Sheryl Sandberg juggles the tasks of monetizing the world’s largest social networking site while keeping its users happy and engaged. In this talk, she looks at why a smaller percentage of women than men reach the top of their professions — and offers 3 powerful pieces of advice to women aiming for the C-suite.

3. Why some of us don’t have one true calling | by Emilie Wapnick: What do you want to be when you grow up? Well, if you’re not sure you want to do just one thing for the rest of your life, you’re not alone. In this illuminating talk, writer and artist Emilie Wapnick describes the kind of people she calls “multipotentialites” — who have a range of interests and jobs over one lifetime. Are you one?

Emilie Wapnick has been a musician/songwriter, a web designer, filmmaker, writer, law student and entrepreneur. “This is how I’ve always lived,” she writes, “moving from interest to interest, building on my skills in different areas, and synthesizing the knowledge I acquire along the way.”

4. Your body language shapes who you are, Amy Cuddy:
Body language affects how others see us, but it may also change how we see ourselves. Social psychologist Amy Cuddy shows how “power posing” — standing in a posture of confidence, even when we don’t feel confident — can affect testosterone and cortisol levels in the brain, and might even have an impact on our chances for success.

Amy Cuddy’s research on body language reveals that we can change other people’s perceptions — and even our own body chemistry — simply by changing body positions.

5. Living beyond limits | by Amy Purdy:
When she was 19, Amy Purdy lost both her legs below the knee. And now … she’s a pro snowboarder (and a killer competitor on “Dancing with the Stars”!). In this powerful talk, she shows us how to draw inspiration from life’s obstacles.

Amy Purdy became a professional snowboarder despite losing both her legs to meningitis. She encourages us to take control of our lives, and our limits.

6. Your elusive creative genius, Elizabeth Gilbert:
Elizabeth Gilbert muses on the impossible things we expect from artists and geniuses — and shares the radical idea that, instead of the rare person “being” a genius, all of us “have” a genius. It’s a funny, personal and surprisingly moving talk.The author of ‘Eat, Pray, Love,’ Elizabeth Gilbert has thought long and hard about some big topics. Her fascinations: genius, creativity and how we get in our own way when it comes to both.

“Gilbert is irreverent, hilarious, zestful, courageous, intelligent, and in masterful command of her sparkling prose.” — Booklist

7. Color blind or color brave? -Mellody Hobson
The subject of race can be very touchy. As finance executive Mellody Hobson says, it’s a “conversational third rail.” But, she says, that’s exactly why we need to start talking about it. In this engaging, persuasive talk, Hobson makes the case that speaking openly about race — and particularly about diversity in hiring — makes for better businesses and a better society.

Mellody Hobson is president of Ariel Investments, a value-driven money management firm — and an advocate for financial literacy and investor education.

8. Find your voice against gender violence, Meera Vijayann
This talk begins with a personal story of sexual violence that may be difficult to listen to. But that’s the point, says citizen journalist Meera Vijayann: Speaking out on tough, taboo topics is the spark for change. Vijayann uses digital media to speak honestly about her experience of gender violence in her home country of India — and calls on others to speak out too.

By using citizen journalism platforms, Meera Vijayann explores creative ways that young women can participate in politics and community matters.

9. Karen Bass | Unseen footage, untamed nature:
About the speaker: Karen Bass has traveled the world to explore and capture footage from every environment across the Earth. Karen Bass is a director and producer with a passion for travel and natural history. In 20 years at the BBC’s Natural History Unit, Bass made wildlife films in almost every environment across the Earth, from the rainforests of the Congo (where she produced the first-ever film of our closest relative, the bonobo), to the deserts of Libya, Syria and Jordan, from the icy peaks of the Andes to the swamps of the Amazon, from erupting volcanoes in the Caribbean to the nocturnal world of raccoons in downtown Manhattan.

About the talk: At TED2012, filmmaker Karen Bass shares some of the astonishing nature footage she’s shot for the BBC and National Geographic — including brand-new, previously unseen footage of the tube-lipped nectar bat, who feeds in a rather unusual way.

10. Kitra Cahana | A glimpse of life on the road:
About the speaker: Kitra Cahana is a Canadian photographer who blurs the line between anthropologist and journalist. The American-born photographer was raised in Canada and Sweden, with a father who worked as a rabbi and took his family along with him everywhere he traveled. Cahana’s itinerant childhood is evident in her work.

About the talk: As a young girl, photojournalist and TED Fellow Kitra Cahana dreamed about running away from home to live freely on the road. Now as an adult and self-proclaimed vagabond, she follows modern nomads into their homes — boxcars, bus stops, parking lots, rest stop bathrooms — giving a glimpse into a culture on the margins.

11. Rachel Sussman | The world’s oldest living things:
About the speaker: Rachel Sussman is on a quest to celebrate the resilience of life by identifying and photographing continuous-living organisms that are 2,000 years or older, all around the world. Sussman’s work has been exhibited throughout the United States and Europe in venues including the Museum of Natural History.

About the talk: Rachel Sussman shows photographs of the world’s oldest continuously living organisms — from 2,000-year-old brain coral off Tobago’s coast to an “underground forest” in South Africa that has lived since before the dawn of agriculture.

12. If I Should Have a Daughter, Sarah Kay:
In a touching, inspiring talk that inspired two standing ovations at TED2011, a passionate poetess starts by reciting a beautiful poem about the things she would tell her daughter about the world if she had one, She goes on to explain her journey through life, and tells the story of her metamorphosis — from a wide-eyed teenager soaking in verse at New York’s Bowery Poetry Club to a teacher connecting kids with the power of self-expression through Project V.O.I.C.E.

Quote to remember – “And she’s going to learn that this life will hit you hard in the face, wait for you to get back up just so it can kick you in the stomach. But getting the wind knocked out of you is the only way to remind your lungs how much they like the taste of air.”

Who is Sarah Kay?
A performing poet since she was 14 years old, Sarah Kay is the founder of Project VOICE, an organization that uses spoken word poetry as a literacy and empowerment tool. Sarah holds a Masters degree in the art of teaching from Brown University and an honorary doctorate in humane letters from Grinnell College. Her first book, Bwas ranked the number one poetry book on Amazon.com. Her second book, No Matter the Wreckageis available from Write Bloody Publishing.

13. The danger of a single story, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
Our lives, our cultures, are composed of many overlapping stories. Novelist Chimamanda Adichie tells the story of how she found her authentic cultural voice — and warns that if we hear only a single story about another person or country, we risk a critical misunderstanding.

Inspired by Nigerian history and tragedies all but forgotten by recent generations of westerners, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s novels and stories are jewels in the crown of diasporan literature.

14. Can we all “have it all”? : Anne-Marie Slaughter
Public policy expert Anne-Marie Slaughter made waves with her 2012 article, “Why women still can’t have it all.” But really, is this only a question for women? Here Slaughter expands her ideas and explains why shifts in work culture, public policy and social mores can lead to more equality — for men, women, all of us.

Dr. Slaughter served as Director of Policy Planning for the United States Department of State from 2009-2011, the first woman to hold that position. She has written or edited six books, including A NEW WORLD ORDER (2004) and THE IDEA THAT IS AMERICA: KEEPING FAITH WITH OUR VALUES IN A DANGEROUS WORLD (2007). She published over 100 scholarly articles in international law and international relations, and helped pioneer an integrated approach to both fields.

15. Why 30 is not the new 20, Meg Jay:
Clinical psychologist Meg Jay has a bold message for twentysomethings: Contrary to popular belief, your 20s are not a throwaway decade. In this provocative talk, Jay says that just because marriage, work and kids are happening later in life, doesn’t mean you can’t start planning now. She gives 3 pieces of advice for how twentysomethings can re-claim adulthood in the defining decade of their lives.

In her book “The Defining Decade,” Meg Jay suggests that many twentysomethings feel trivialized during what is actually the most transformative — and defining — period of our adult lives. Our twenties are a time when the things we do — and the things we don’t do — will have an enormous effect across years and even generations to come.

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