“Life is either a daring adventure or nothing at all.” Stated by the influential figure Helen Keller, the quote brings the importance of adventure in one’s life to light, in relation to the TED Talk at hand. Caroline Paul, author of “The Gutsy Girl: Escapades for Your Life of Epic Adventure” presents an interesting position on the topic of encouraging girls to take risks and follow their dreams, instead of teaching them that they are meant to fear adventure and leave it to the boys to experience, in the informative TED Talk, To Raise Brave Girls, Encourage Adventure. Throughout the speech, Paul incorporates many forms of persuasion in to her argument to allow the audience to see where she is coming from and understand the importance of the topic at hand, encouraging women to be brave and powerful, including ethos, pathos, and logos, that pull at the audience’s ethics, emotions, and logic. The speaker incorporates many personal stories in her speech in order to relate the topic back to herself and allow the audience to relate to what she is saying; that women can do amazing and powerful things when given the support they need.
The speaker pulls at the audience’s ethics and views of society in order to help them understand her position on the topic of raising young girls to be brave and independent. We are raised in society with certain views, such that men are strong and independent, and encouraged to explore, and women are dependent, and encouraged to stick to what is familiar. The speaker raises questions and thought about the way society views women and how we treat them. She speaks about standards we have set in place, like “girls should be fearful, and boys should be gutsy. (Paul 6:15)” In a society so set in its standards and values, it is important to work against these and do whatever it takes to make oneself happy. Adventure is crucial in living a happy and fulfilling life.
Caroline Paul pulls at the audience’s emotions in many ways throughout the speech in order to help them understand the importance of the topic and relate it to their lives and experiences. Not only does she appeal to their obvious emotions, including wanting young girls to feel strong and powerful, but she helps the audience feel engaged to the speaker by telling them about her life in a way that seems familiar and friendly. She uses quotes such as, “I am not against fear, I am just pro-bravery (Paul 7:15)” to cement her point that it is not wrong for women to be fearful or anxious of trying something, but that it is important to work past that fear and anxiety and be brave. Not only does this engage the audience, but it lets them understand more clearly how real and personal the topic is, and allows them to relate their lives to the speech, as the speaker does.
Finally, Caroline Paul appeals to the audience’s logic in the important topic of how to raise strong and independent girls by showing them how simple and powerful it can be. “Skip not only thought that women could not be strong, he thought that they could not be brave either. And he was not the only one. (Paul 4:20)”, she says, describing one of many experiences she has gone through in life that strengthen her point, when she worked as a firefighter and put out a particularly strong fire, and was given reluctant and almost surprised congratulations by her male co-worker, who did not expect her to be able to complete the task on her own, simply because she was a girl. By including personal stories of all the things she has accomplished simply because she was supported throughout her life and encouraged to do what she felt she wanted to do, like breaking a world record in crawling, being an air glider, a firefighter, and simply a strong and motivated woman, the audience was able to see just how impactful simply encouraging girls to be brave could be. In society, we are often shaped into treating women like dependent, and weak beings, and feel men can do something better in certain cases, but given the right support, women can do anything.
Overall, Caroline Paul presents a powerful and impactful speech on the importance of allowing women to feel supported and encouraged in their journey as they grow and make their way through life. By appealing to the audience’s full spectra of fallacies, including ethos, pathos, and logos, the speaker was able to convince them of how impactful and simple something like this truly is if we put in the effort and always remember to support people, no matter their gender. I believe that my analysis of this speech matters not only because it impacted me and allowed me to understand what following the points of this speech could do, but it gave me strength and encouraged me to be brave and experience adventures as well. I have always been interested in encouraging women to be brave and strong and accomplish their goals. I think it is extremely important to support young women and give them the support they need to succeed. I believe that this speech not only impacted me, but many in the audience and those watching elsewhere, because she showed them how it affected her personally, and the things she was able to do because of it. People are able to see her and think of those in their lives that can relate to her and understand more clearly how strong women can be when given the opportunity.
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