William James Hall stands in isolation, set back in an open plaza. Japanese American architect Minoru Yamasaki and Associates designed this classroom tower devoted to the study of the social sciences. Built of precast-concrete piers and panels, its facade of four wide bays rises fifteen stories to a projecting slab roof, looming over its neighbors, intimidating in its scale. William James Hall was Yamasaki's second building at Harvard—his 1962 Engineering Sciences Laboratory at 40 Oxford Street similarly denies its surrounding context, giving the appearance of belonging to some institution other than Harvard.
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William James Hall
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