The Language of Houses
How Buildings Speak to Us
by Alison Lurie - paperback 2015
In the 1980’s, the Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist Alison Lurie wrote a meditation on clothing as an expression of history, social status and individual psychology. The Language of Clothes (Random House) came to be highly regarded in the literature of couture and design.
Lurie has returned with The Language of Houses, a provocative and entertaining journey through the architecture of houses and buildings and the divided spaces within come to reflect the attitudes and purposes of the organizations and people who inhabit them.
What makes a house is in the eye of the beholder, and the word can mean anything from church to office to domicile and more – and relies on the use of materials such as stone and wood and stucco and the roles of stairs and windows, tight interiors and open expanses.
Structures discussed are: schools, churches, government building, museums, prisons, hospitals, restaurants, and of course, houses and homes.
Filled with literary references and charming hand-drawings, Lurie’s new work will appeal to fans of Bill Bryson’s At Home, as well as provoke wide review attention for this award-winning author.