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TED talks

TED Talk: Safwat Saleem Urges You to Find Your Voice — Plus, a Helpful Book List

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Finding a voice to fit your identity is never easy. However, artist, designer and animator Safwat Saleem, had a particularly difficult time, struggling with anxiety about his childhood stutter. In this thought-provoking, heartfelt and adorably animated talk from TED 2016, Saleem describes how he overcame his struggle to incorporate his voice into his artwork, not only through childhood, but in the face of rude YouTube commenters who ridiculed his Pakistani accent as an adult. Instead of letting ill-mannered commenters keep him from using his own voice in his work, Saleem rather unpacks the reasons behind those comments: differing definitions of “normality” that lead to preconceived notions. Saleem resolves to use his art to challenge those preconceived notions, which is about…

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TED Talks: Ron Finley Discusses Urban Gardening as Social Rebellion

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Ron Finley sees soil as his tapestry, something to be embellished with renewable food that brings his community together. He gave this week’s TED Tuesday talk, “A Guerilla Gardener in South Central LA” at TED 2013, and spoke about his passion project: creating vegetable gardens in his urban neighborhood inside abandoned lots, along curbs and in traffic medians. The organization he started in 2010, LA Green Grounds, is a grass-roots volunteer group in South LA. The group’s main goal is to prevent hunger and poverty and to improve the health of a community, where, Finley says, “the drive-thrus are killing more people than drive-bys.” Ron Finley’s project to bring food to urban dessert of South LA (and around the country)…

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TED Talks: Candy Chang Discusses Her Before I Die Project

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Art has the power to create inspiration from hardship, the power to bring emotional clarity to difficult times, and the power to make people laugh like idiots. Artist Candy Chang, in this week’s TED Tuesday pick, describes her Before I Die project, where she took a blank public wall and created a community art piece that is as charmingly funny as it is deeply contemplative. Her experiment in public participation, with the goal of turning “a neglected space into a constrictive one” as she puts it, has grown into a global movement. Chang’s emotional and stirring talk proves that visual art has the power to heal, amuse, and bring people together in unexpected ways. Recommended Reading: Before I Die, Candy…

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TED Talks: Harry Baker’s Love Poetry for Lonely Prime Numbers

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Words become fluid, flying objects when a spoken-word artist gets a hold of them. Internationally popular slam poet Harry Baker’s playful use of surprising metaphors create whimsical images that inspire and provoke thought. This week’s featured TED video is a talk from Baker, an award winning spoken-word poet and 2012 World Slam Champion. In this video he performs three poems for the TEDxExeter 2014 audience and discusses slam poetry and how he accidentally discovered it. His wonderful pun-laden poetry is perfect for a little Tuesday inspiration. Recommended Reading The Sunshine Kid, Harry Baker (Burning Eye Books, 2014) Harry’s first collection of poetry features some of the poems read on stage at TEDxExeter. It’s an honest, cheeky, and fun collection of…

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Introducing TED Tuesday: Amanda Palmer Discusses ‘The Art of Asking’

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Welcome to the first installment of our new weekly nugget of inspiration—TED Tuesday! Every Tuesday BookTrib will feature a TED Talk of the Week to inspire you to see the world with a new perspective. If you don’t know what TED is, stop what you’re doing right now and check out their website. TED, short for “technology, entertainment and design,” is a nonprofit organization devoted to “ideas worth spreading” by hosting annual conferences where an eclectic mix of speakers—innovators, philosophers, artists, scientists and more—discuss their experiences and share their insight. They are also affiliated with local TED talks, called TEDx conferences. Watching TED talks is a great way to get those brain juices flowing, so this week we’re featuring, “The…

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