Baylor Honors College to Host Philip Bess Lecture

Oct. 15, 2010

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Dr. Philip Bess, the director of graduate studies in the School of Architecture at the University of Notre Dame, will give a lecture at 4 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 19, in the Memorial Drawing Room of the Honors Residential College on Baylor's campus.

The event is free and open to the public.

Hosted by the Baylor Honors College, Bess will speak on "Urbanism and Natural Law; or, Are the Suburbs a Mistake?"

"Central to the mainstream Christian natural law tradition's understanding of moral obligation is the idea that there are foundational principles of morality," Bess said. "The question is whether there is a principle for making human settlements, for how human beings live together, that might qualify as a natural law precept."

Bess received his bachelor's degree from Whittier College in 1973, a Master in Theological Studies from the Harvard Divinity School in 1976 and a Master of Architecture from the University of Virginia in 1981.

From 1987-88 he was the director and principal designer of the Urban Baseball Park Design Project of the Society for American Baseball Research. In August 2000, he directed and coordinated the ultimately successful "Save Fenway Park!" design charrette in Boston.

Bess is the author of three books: "City Baseball Magic: Plain Talk and Uncommon Sense About Cities and Baseball Parks," "Inland Architecture: Subterranean Essays on Moral Order and Formal Order in Chicago" and "Till We Have Built Jerusalem: Architecture, Urbanism, and the Sacred."

He has served as director of graduate studies in the School of Architecture at the University of Notre Dame since 2004.

Bess teaches graduate urban design and theory, and continues his professional work as a design consultant for municipalities, architects and community development corporations working through the office of Thursday Associates.

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by Katy McDowall, student newswriter, (254) 710-6805

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