As famously stated by Ralph Waldo Emerson, “If we encounter a man of rare intellect, we should ask him what books he reads”. Books are important for many reasons. They inspire us, teach us, offer new perspectives, help us examine our prejudices and existential anxieties, and make us feel an array of emotions from sorrow to bliss. And of course, they are a powerful medium for sharing important ideas.
The TEDxUW team is full of bookworms. Below are some of our team’s favourite books, and the reasons why they mean so much to us.
Noah Bezaire - Speaker Relations Director
“The Last Lecture” by Randy Pausch
“My favorite book, head and shoulders above the rest, is ‘The Last Lecture’ by Randy Pausch. While there is a ton of backstory that I don’t want to spoil, the book is primarily about making the most of the opportunities that you are given. Through sharing his short stories and life learnings, Randy reminds us that we should be making the most out of our time here and living each day happily and to our full potential. It’s a book that I try to re-read every few years, just as a reminder to not take even the littlest of things for granted.”
Allison Marchese - Marketing Director
“#GirlBoss” by Sophia Amoruso
“#GirlBoss is a sort of 'rags to riches' story written by Sophia Amoruso about her rise to success. As a young girl, Amoruso was involved in petty theft and hopped from couch to couch with no real place to call home. Today, she is the successful founder and CEO of Nasty Gal - a hand-curated clothing line that strives to bring women the most fashion forward pieces to add to their wardrobes.
#GirlBoss is a cold, hard, straight-to-the-point kind of book. Amoruso doesn't mess around and she definitely doesn't give you a sugar coated, fairytale view of what the road to success looks like. Her book inspires people, mostly women, and specifically me, to work towards their goals and never let anyone tell them that they cannot achieve success. Amoruso said "fortune favours the bold that get shit done", and I honestly believe there's no more truthful saying.
#GirlBoss explains many of the challenges that today's entrepreneurs face, especially females. However, it's also a success story that provides insight into both how challenges can be overcome, as well as the rewards that come as a result of doing so.”
Munin Kim - Co-Chair
"Learn to Earn" by Peter Lynch
“This book spurred my interest in business and investment. It gave me a great overview of how businesses have operated over hundreds of years. Further, it gave me a new perspective on how great business opportunities are not ones people commonly pursue.
E.g. During the California Gold Rush, the majority of the people who made a fortune weren't the people who went after the gold. It was actually the people who sold tools and equipment to the people who went after the gold who became wealthy. Most people who went after the gold got little to nothing out of it.”
Emily Misurec - Content Manager
“The Art of Thinking Clearly” by Rolf Dobelli
“This book points out many of the common cognitive biases that people tend to make in their day-to-day thought processes, and how to overcome them in order to make better choices. This book provided me with clarity on many of the errors I tend to make in my own thinking patterns, and how these errors hinder decision making in various parts of my life; from money and budgeting, to relationships, to making decisions about my future. After reading this book, I am much more mindful of my thinking patterns, and feel like I can confidently make favourable decisions. Overall, It helped me overcome indecisiveness, something I have struggled with since a young age.”