Copley Square: History through Architecture

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Copley Square is one of Boston’s most architecturally significant and instantly recognizable public locations. This urban square is home to Trinity Church, the Boston Public Library, Old South Church and the Hancock Tower, among other important landmarks. The square defines the city, as well as the evolution of American architecture and urban design, from colony toward the sophistication of global European squares, moving creatively from Beaux-Arts style to International Style and Modernism. Architectural historian Leslie Humm Cormier, PhD, explores this contemporary place from its origins as an estuary to its vital significance as a stylistic link between old-world style and new-world design.

Leslie Humm Cormier, PhD, writes on the history and theory of art, architecture and urban design in Europe and America. She received her doctorate from Brown University as a Kress Fellow, affording her study in London and Paris. She is the author of a book on the Early Modern era in American architecture, as well as many articles on Modern architecture and urban design in architectural encyclopedias. Previously a faculty member of Harvard University Extension and Radcliffe Seminars, Cormier is currently affiliated with the Boston Architectural College.