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Analysis

The Book of Ruth Allusions & Cultural References

Technically, the Bible is probably the most alluded to work, ever. Let's take a closer look.

Ode to a Nightingale by John Keats

In Keats's poem, the speaker alludes to Ruth "sick for home, / She stood in tears amid the alien corn." Wait a second, there's no crying in gleaning.

Rabbit, Run by John Updike

The name of Rabbit's mistress in this book is a bit of an ironic twist on the Book of Ruth. Ruth Leonard is an atheist and ex-prostitute who demands that Rabbit leave his wife and marry her. Naturally, Rabbit runs, but you already saw that coming.

The Book of Ruth by Jane Hamilton

The title character in this novel has nothing but conflict with her mother and husband, so maybe the author should have called this The Reverse Book of Ruth?

The Threepenny Opera by Kurt Weill and Bertolt Brecht

During this German musical, the lovers, Macheath and Polly, recite some lines from Ruth 1:16-17. What can we say? It's good stuff.

Men Are from Israel, Women Are from Moab by Norm Wakefield and Jody Brolsma

Here's spin on the popular relationship book, Men Are from Mars, Women Are from Venus, based on the wisdom and romance in the Book of Ruth. Hey, it can't be any worse than the original.

Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

Okay, hear us out on this one. No, the novel doesn't have any explicit ties to Ruth, but it does tell the story of a woman who would love for nothing more than her daughter to marry "a prominent rich man" so that she can have security and a future as a wife. We're pretty sure Boaz would be invited to tea at Longbourn.

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