playlist

New ways to think about beauty

These thoughtful talks explore the timeless concept of beauty. How do we decide what — and who — is beautiful? What role does this play in our lives?

  1. 9:37
    Cameron Russell Looks aren't everything. Believe me, I'm a model.

    Cameron Russell admits she won “a genetic lottery”: she's tall, pretty and an underwear model. But don't judge her by her looks. In this fearless talk, she takes a wry look at the industry that had her looking highly seductive at barely 16 years old.

  2. 12:02
    Meaghan Ramsey Why thinking you're ugly is bad for you

    About 10,000 people a month Google the phrase, “Am I ugly?” Meaghan Ramsey of the Dove Self-Esteem Project has a feeling that many of them are young girls. In a deeply unsettling talk, she walks us through the surprising impacts of low body and image confidence—from lower grade point averages to greater risk-taking with drugs and alcohol. And then shares the key things all of us can do to disrupt this reality.

  3. 8:16
    Isabel Allende How to live passionately—no matter your age

    Author Isabel Allende is 71. Yes, she has a few wrinkles—but she has incredible perspective too. In this candid talk, meant for viewers of all ages, she talks about her fears as she gets older and shares how she plans to keep on living passionately.

  4. 15:33
    Denis Dutton A Darwinian theory of beauty

    TED collaborates with animator Andrew Park to illustrate Denis Dutton's provocative theory on beauty — that art, music and other beautiful things, far from being simply "in the eye of the beholder," are a core part of human nature with deep evolutionary origins.

  5. 9:59
    Geena Rocero Why I must come out

    When fashion model Geena Rocero first saw a photo of herself in a bikini, "I thought ... you have arrived!" As she reveals, that's because she was born with the gender assignment "boy." In this moving talk, Rocero tells the story of becoming who she always knew she was.

  6. 9:58
    Aimee Mullins My 12 pairs of legs

    Athlete, actor and activist Aimee Mullins talks about her prosthetic legs — she's got a dozen amazing pairs — and the superpowers they grant her: speed, beauty, an extra 6 inches of height ... Quite simply, she redefines what the body can be.

  7. 17:15
    Richard Seymour How beauty feels

    A story, a work of art, a face, a designed object — how do we tell that something is beautiful? And why does it matter so much to us? Designer Richard Seymour explores our response to beauty and the surprising power of objects that exhibit it.

  8. 16:15
    Virginia Postrel On glamour

    In a timely talk, cultural critic Virginia Postrel muses on the true meaning, and the powerful uses, of glamour — which she defines as any calculated, carefully polished image designed to impress and persuade.