Part 2, Chapters 10-12 Summary
When the Enright House opens, there is little fanfare. Most find it hideous, but Roark nevertheless begins to get commissions. Kent Lansing hires him to design a luxury hotel, The Aquitania. Dominique tells Toohey that she is glad Roark got it, which causes Toohey to question her partnership with him in Roark’s destruction. This she denies. Hopton Stoddard is a millionaire who finds solace in religion in the way of a bribe. He wants to build a temple to religion, but Toohey advises him against it. When he rethinks the plan, he tells Stoddard that he will back him as long as he hires Howard Roark to draw the designs. Stoddard is concerned when he learns that Roark is an atheist, but Toohey assures him that Roark believes in God in his own way, as is evident by the buildings he designs. Stoddard approaches Roark with the plan, but Roark is at first reluctant because he does not believe in God. Stoddard is pleased that things are proceeding as Toohey predicted, and he tells Roark that he may design it in any way he wants, as a Temple to the Human Spirit. Given carte blanche, Roark agrees.
The Cosmo-Slotnick Building opens, but Peter Keating is happy about it. Toohey tells him that he should marry Dominique rather than Katie because Katie will not enhance his career. Roark begins the designs for the Aquitania as well as Stoddard’s Temple. He decides he wants Steve Mallory to make the sculpture representing the spirit of man. He tries to contact Mallory and with difficulty makes an appointment with him, but Mallory does not show up for the appointment. Roark tracks him down and treats him like a human being; this is something Mallory desperately needs. Mallory agrees to do the sculpture and accepts Roark’s suggestion that the model should be Dominique Francon. Dominique accepts, much to the displeasure of the people around her. After the 1929 Stock Market Crash, the work on the Aquitania stops.
The Stoddard Temple is complete, and Hopton Stoddard returns from abroad to see it. He brings a lawsuit against Howard Roark for breach of contract and malpractice. The Stoddard Temple becomes the focus of societal umbrage. It is sacrilegious, a defamation of the religious spirit. Roark refuses to hire counsel and serves as his own defense. At the trial, witness after witness testifies against Roark. The final witness is Dominique Francon, who had agreed to serve as a witness for the prosecution. She agrees that the Stoddard Temple should be destroyed—not because it is sacrilegious but because the world is undeserving of such a building. Roark’s only defense is to place photographs of the Stoddard Temple before the judge.