Theodore Dalrymple returns to The American Conservative after an eight-year hiatus with another excellent essay on President Trump’s much-needed executive order to restore classical architecture to all new federal buildings, which will hopefully banish the modernist, brutalist style of unmitigated ugliness into the dustbin of history. There are another eight essays from the skeptical doctor from 2006-2012 that our readers can catch up on.
The order will also free architects and teachers of architecture from the groupthink which undoubtedly afflicts the profession, not only in America but in Europe and elsewhere. It will serve to increase, not reduce, choice, and with luck will restore public confidence in its own taste and right to pronounce on architectural matters, as well as its influence over what is built in its name. After all, it is the public that has to live with architecture. Architecture should not be a secret garden into the beauties of which only architects may enter.