Macaulay Returns to Sacred Space with 'Mosque'

'Cathedral' Author's New Work Inspired by Post-Sept. 11 Turmoil

Detail from an illustration from Macaulay's book Mosque showing one of the central design features of mosques: using a round dome to cover a square-shaped space. hide caption

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David Macaulay and Liane Hansen

David Macaulay and NPR's Liane Hansen at the Islamic Center in Washington, D.C. Neal Carruth, NPR News hide caption

itoggle caption Neal Carruth, NPR News

David Macaulay explains architecture to readers young and old. As the author and illustrator of such books as Castle and City, he uses lively pen and ink drawings to depict the evolution of large-scale public building projects.

Thirty years after the publication of his book Cathedral, Macaulay returns to the construction of sacred spaces with his new book Mosque. On a recent afternoon, NPR's Liane Hansen joined Macaulay for a conversation at the Islamic Center in Washington, D.C.

Macaulay says the sacred buildings themselves inspired the writing of Mosque, but he he was motivated by the attacks of Sept. 11 to remind the world that the major religious traditions have more in common than they have separating them.

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