6 TED Talks by Captivating Women

From environmental concerns and social change to holding on to your female friends, the women leading these TED Talks have eloquent and inspiring advice for us all. Next time you slip your headphones on, press play on one of Audrey’s favourite TED Talks below.

We should all be feminists
by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie at TEDxEuston

 “I’m trying to unlearn many of the lessons of gender that I internalized when I was growing up. But I sometimes still feel very vulnerable in the face of gender expectations. The first time I taught a writing class in graduate school, I was worried. I wasn’t worried about the material I would teach because I was well-prepared, and I was going to teach what I enjoy teaching. Instead, I was worried about what to wear. I wanted to be taken seriously. I knew that because I was female I will automatically have to prove my worth. And I was worried that if I looked too feminine, I would not be taken seriously. I really wanted to wear my shiny lip gloss and my girly skirt, but I decided not to. Instead, I wore a very serious, very manly and very ugly suit.”

Can we all “have it all”?
by Anne-Marie Slaughter at TEDGlobal 2013

“The feminist revolution still has a long way to go. It’s certainly not complete. But 60 years after “The Feminine Mystique” was published, many women actually have more choices than men do. We can decide to be a breadwinner, a caregiver, or any combination of the two. When a man, on the other hand, decides to be a caregiver, he puts his manhood on the line. His friends may praise his decision, but underneath, they’re scratching their heads. Isn’t the measure of a man his willingness to compete with other men for power and prestige?”

My wish: Protect our oceans
by Sylvia Earle at TED2009

“I’m haunted by the thought of what Ray Anderson calls ‘tomorrow’s child’, asking why we didn’t do something on our watch to save sharks and bluefin tuna and squids and coral reefs and the living ocean while there still was time. Well, now is that time. I hope for your help to explore and protect the wild ocean in ways that will restore the health and, in so doing, secure hope for humankind. Health to the ocean means health for us.”

A hilarious celebration of lifelong female friendship
by Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin at TEDWomen 2015

Lily Tomlin: The Harvard Medical School study has shown that women who have close female friendships are less likely to develop impairments – physical impairments as they age, and they are likely to be seen as living much more vital, exciting, joyful lives.

This tennis icon paved the way for women in sports
by Billie Jean King at TEDWomen 2015

“We do stand on the shoulders of the people that came before us, there is no question. But every generation has the chance to make it better.”

How to make hard choices
by Ruth Chang at TEDSalon NY2014

“It’s a mistake to think that in hard choices, one alternative really is better than the other, but we’re too stupid to know which, and since we don’t know which, we might as well take the least risky option. Even taking two alternatives side by side with full information, a choice can still be hard. Hard choices are hard not because of us or our ignorance; they’re hard because there is no best option.”

For more informative and inspiring TED talks, visit www.ted.com.

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