Why are babies cute? Why is cake sweet? Philosopher Dan Dennett has answers you wouldn't expect, as he shares evolution's counterintuitive reasoning on cute, sweet and sexy things (plus a new theory from Matthew Hurley on why jokes are funny).
Diseases of the body garner sympathy, says comedian Ruby Wax -- except those of the brain. Why is that? With dazzling energy and humor, Wax, diagnosed a decade ago with clinical depression, urges us to put an end to the stigma of mental illness.
What if all the motivational speakers are wrong? Writer and humorist Harrison Scott Key uses his own unremarkable journey from country boy to -- if you ask his mom -- literary star to illustrate the mildly outrageous truth about what it really takes to achieve the American Dream.
How would you prefer to spend the last years of your life: in a sterile, hospital-like institution or in a village with a supermarket, pub, theater and park within easy walking distance? The answer seems obvious now, but when Yvonne van Amerongen helped develop the groundbreaking Hogeweyk dementia care center in Amsterdam 25 years ago, it was se...
With her signature wit and wisdom, Emily Levine meets her ultimate challenge as a comedian/philosopher: she makes dying funny. In this personal talk, she takes us on her journey to make friends with reality -- and peace with death. Life is an enormous gift, Levine says: "You enrich it as best you can, and then you give it back."
Born with a rare disorder that prevents her from gaining weight, Lizzie Velasquez has faced more negativity and bullying than most. Over time, she's developed a simple but effective coping mechanism. "Tell me those negative things," she says. "I'm gonna turn them around and use them as a ladder to climb up to my goals." In this funny, personal t...
In this poignant, funny follow-up to his fabled 2006 talk, Sir Ken Robinson makes the case for a radical shift from standardized schools to personalized learning -- creating conditions where kids' natural talents can flourish.
Thailand's "Mr. Condom," Mechai Viravaidya, retells the country's bold plan to raise its standard of living, starting in the 1970s. First step: population control. And that means a lot of frank, funny -- and very effective -- talk about condoms.
Kevin Breel didn't look like a depressed kid: team captain, at every party, funny and confident. But he tells the story of the night he realized that -- to save his own life -- he needed to say four simple words.
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.