Aesthetics is the branch of philosophy that explores beauty, the sublime, taste, and aesthetic experience. On the first evening, we will survey some of the prominent theories of aesthetics from Plato to more recent times. Special attention will be given to ideas about beauty. In the second evening, we will look at how these theories have practical value in areas like business, policy, and others. Participants will gain an overview of how the ideas in aesthetics influence their lives and society.
Michael Spicher began studying theories of beauty and aesthetics over a decade ago. Since then, he has published articles, given lectures (to academics and general audiences), and earned a PhD in philosophy focusing on aesthetics and political philosophy. He serves as the aesthetics area editor for the Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy, an editor for the Leonardo Electronic Almanac (published by MIT Press), and a lecturer at Boston University, Boston Architectural College, and Mass College of Art and Design. As an artist, he paints and plays harmonica and slide guitar.