Life of Pi
Life of Pi
by Yann Martel

Life of Pi Allusions and Cultural References

When authors give shout outs to other great works, people, and events, it's usually not accidental. Put on your super-sleuth hat and figure out why.

Literary References

Jewish, Christian, and Islamic References

  • Isaac Luria (1.1.2)
  • Christ Renames the Disciples (1.5.4)
  • Christ in the Garden of Gethsemane (1.7.21)
  • Christ or Christ on the Cross (1.7.21 and numerous other times)
  • Virgin Mary (1.15.2 and numerous other times)
  • Parable of the Mustard Seed (1.16.1)
  • Holy Spirit (1.17.21, 1.17.26-27)
  • Christ and the Fig Tree (1.17.36, 2.90.20-27)
  • Baptism and other Christian rituals (1.26.4 and numerous other times)
  • St. Francis Xavier (1.27.17)
  • Thomas à Kempis, The Imitation of Christ (1.27.28-29)
  • Noah (2.45.2 and numerous other times)
  • Cain (2.61.26)
  • Doubting Thomas (2.92.12)
  • Mohammed (1.5.9 and numerous other times)
  • Allah (1.15.6 and numerous other times)
  • Call to Prayer and other Muslim rituals (1.18.12 and numerous other times)
  • Qur'an (1.20.3, 1.23.10, 1.31.49)
  • Abraham (1.26.15)
  • David (1.26.15)
  • Moses (1.26.15)

Hindu References

  • Ganesha (1.15.1, 1.15.3, 1.23.7)
  • Shiva (1.15.2)
  • Vishnu, Krishna, Rama (1.15.3 and numerous other times)
  • Lakshmi (1.1.11, 1.15.3)
  • Shakti as Parvati (1.15.3)
  • Brahman (1.16.3, 1.17.21, 1.17.29)
  • Atman (1.16.3)
  • Ramayana (1.17.21, 1.23.7)
  • Yashoda, Foster-Mother of Krishna (1.17.23)
  • Hanuman (1.23.7, 2.66.7)
  • Mahabharata (1.23.7)
  • Darshan, Puja and other Hindu rituals (1.23.12 and numerous other times)
  • Arjuna in the Bhagavad Gita (2.73.1)

Historical Figures

  • Søren Kierkegaard (Author's Note.1.10)
  • Richard Parker: A sailor hanged for a 1797 mutiny
  • Richard Parker: A seaman who was eaten by fellow survivors in an 1846 shipwreck
  • Richard Parker: A cabin boy eaten by fellow survivors in an 1884 shipwreck
  • Gregor Mendel (1.7.2)
  • Charles Darwin (1.7.2, 3.99.56)
  • Indira Gandhi (1.7.8, 1.27.10-12, 1.29.4-6)
  • Heini Hediger (1.13.3)
  • Gandhi (1.23.54-55, 1.26.45-46, 1.27.13-15, 2.92.71)
  • Chief Minister Karunanidhi (1.29.4)
  • Morarji Desai (1.29.6)
  • Dougal Robertson and Family (2.63.1)
  • William Bligh (2.63.1)
  • Steven Callahan (2.63.1)
  • Owen Chase (2.63.1)
  • Poon Lim (2.63.1)
  • Christopher Columbus (1.34.1, 3.99.50)
  • Nicolaus Copernicus (3.99.56)

Pop Culture References

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