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Alison Lurie decodes the messages that buildings send in The Language of Houses

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Pulitzer Prize-winning author Alison Lurie proves once again that her view of the world is sharper than most with her latest book, The Language of Houses ( Delphinium Books, September). The book comes 30 years after its predecessor, The Language of Clothes, applying that book’s method of thought to houses in Lurie’s trademark crisp, smart prose style. But it’s not just houses that Houses examines. The Language of Houses thoughtfully considers the messages sent by all of the types of buildings, structures, and abodes that humans occupy—including schools, malls, office buildings, prisons, restaurants, and hotels. Lurie sees each of these “houses” as an accumulation of information meant to suggest particular moods and expectations and to elicit certain types of behaviors…

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