For this week’s Wednesday 5 we’ve selected videos from around the Web of women who will undoubtedly inspire you. TED Talks, the “Ideas Worth Spreading” hub, recently released three powerful new videos for August by equally powerful and engaging women: a former CEO, a peace activist, and a graphic designer.  ForbesWoman profiled Princeton’s president, Shirley Tilghman, on how she defines success and failure. And curated a  selection of five trailblazing women who have faced and overcome adversity.


TED Talks from Inspiring Women

In “Dare to Disagree,Margaret Heffernan, a seasoned CEO of five businesses, challenges us NOT to avoid conflict. She shows us how disagreements usher in progress and stronger relationships. Don’t seek out just a sounding board or a cheerleading squad, she urges; rather, find value in the people who offer you pushback,  however frustrating that might be. It could lead to a breakthrough.

Meanwhile, peace activist and three-time Nobel Peace Prize nominee Scilla Elworthy ponders conflict of another sort: “How do we deal with extreme violence without using force in return?” Her “Fighting with Non-Violence” is timely and much-needed balm as we try to make sense of the recent Colorado and Wisconsin shootings. Elworthy turns to the philosophies and actions of Aung San Suu Kyi, Mahatma Gandhi, and Nelson Mandela to help find the answers.

“[Photos are] our memory-keepers and our histories, the last thing we would grab [in a crisis], and the first thing you’d go back to look for,” says photo retoucher Becci Manson, who recovered and restored hundreds of photographs lost in the Japanese earthquake and tsunami  in March 2011. Manson details,  in “(Re)touching Lives Through Photos,” the arduous task of gathering the photos and carefully hand-cleaning them, and the time required to to digitally retouch them—some of them more than 100 years old, some still in their envelopes from the photo processing shop.

How Is Failure Like Porography?

“Failure is one of those things like pornography. You know it when you see it!” So says Princeton University president Shirley Tilghman in a video featured on ForbesWoman, the multi-media platform about women in business and leadership. She is the first woman to hold the position at Princeton and only the second female president in the Ivy League. And while many are still wrestling with Anne-Marie Slaughter’s take on “Why Women Can’t Have It All,” Tilghman believes that her generation, in fact, “spent too much time talking about how difficult it was” to find a fitting work-family balance. She’s interested in the success stories. And, she says, there are many of them! 

Facing and Overcoming Adversity, the site that explores the stories of trailblazing women, has added to its August roster  five women who faced and overcame adversity. Byllye Avery, founder of the Black Women’s Health Imperative, talks about helping women enduring domestic abuse; NYC Fire Captain Brenda Berkman shares how she recovered from sexual assault; journalist Katie Couric recounts how she made it through the death of her husband; activist Diane Nash describes moving from fear to leading civil rights campaigns; and Zainab Salbi, founder of Women for Women International, shares her gratitude for all her scars, both physical and symbolic.