Beauty is often associated with expensiveness and elitism. However, beauty is necessary for human well-being. This talk will present some of the prominent ideas about beauty from the history of philosophy. Plato connected beauty with knowledge; Thomas Aquinas asserts three conditions of beauty (proportion, integrity, radiance); and Immanuel Kant reminds us that there is no formula for guaranteeing the creation of beauty. Rather than limiting the discussion to theory alone, examples from business, science, and social issues (like climate change and prison reform) will demonstrate the practical significance of taking beauty seriously. Beauty is not something we add to our lives only after things are going well. The desire for beauty is a basic human drive.
Michael R. Spicher, PhD is a public philosopher and creator of Aesthetics Research Lab. He writes and speaks about aesthetics in professional and academic contexts. He is a regular contributor to BeautyMatter, a resource for the beauty industry. Michael lectures at both Boston Architectural College and Massachusetts College of Art and Design. He co-edited a forthcoming volume with Bloomsbury Visual Arts, Digital Fashion: Theory, Practice, Implications. And he is working on another book called Is Your Business Beautiful?