October 13, 2000

A.D. White Professor Cleese Speaks Tonight in Bailey

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A.D. White Professor-at-Large John Cleese, will speak tonight at 7:30 p.m. in Bailey Hall. The lecture will follow a screening of the Monty Python film, “Life of Brian.”

Cleese, the actor and comedian, is returning to Cornell after his last visit in Feb. 1999, and will teach a screenwriting class with Hollywood writer William Goldman. In addition, Cleese plans to lead a discussion on “Life of Brian” with students and Cornell religious leaders.

In an acting career spanning more than thirty years, Cleese has used humor as an effective way to introduce philosophy, science, history, religion and other subjects to millions.

Cleese holds an M.A. in law from Cambridge University and an honorary LL.D. from St. Andrews University, where he served as rector. He is widely known for his work in the television series, “Monty Python’s Flying Circus” and “Fawlty Towers.”

In addition, Cleese has appeared in the films, “A Fish Called Wanda,” “Monty Python and the Holy Grail,” “Life of Brian,” “Time Bandits,” and “Fierce Creatures.” His written works include Families and How to Survive Them and Life and How to Survive It.

Since its inception in 1965, Cornell’s program for Professors at-Large has served to bring distinguished scholars to campus for the benefit of students and faculty alike. The University appoints up to 20 A.D. White professors with six-year terms at any given time.

Last week, A.D. White Professor at-Large Toni Morrison M.A. ’55 spoke on campus.

Archived article by Ken Meyer