Study Guide

Book of Genesis Allusions

Advertisement - Guide continues below


When it comes to having an insanely important influence on culture, Genesis is guilty as charged. This book has its fingerprints all over Western art and media, from the Sistine Chapel to Sega Genesis. And it spans the distance from a huge Noah's Ark replica in Holland to a creepy Noah's Ark funhouse in Pennsylvania.

The point? The shout-outs we have here are less the tip of the iceberg and more the tip of, um, a black hole.

Literary and Philosophical References

Anita Diamant, The Red Tent
In The Red Tent, Anita Diamant retells the stories of the book of Genesis from the perspective of its female characters. Take that, ancient patriarchal society.

Sᴓren Kierkegaard, Fear and Trembling
In his 1843 Fear and Trembling, Kierkegaard offers a philosophical interpretation of Abraham's binding and near sacrifice of Isaac (Genesis 22), exploring the themes of stress, anxiety, and faith within the episode. Warning: you might need a PhD in Hard-To-Understand Stuff to get through this one.

John Milton, Paradise Lost
Milton retells (and expands like whoa) the story of the Adam and Eve in his 17th-century epic poem, Paradise Lost. Spoiler alert: things are looking grim.

Pop Culture References

Fell-off-the-radar sci-fi drama Heroes opened its four-season run with a pilot episode called "Genesis." The episode lays out the origins of the principal characters. Fitting, don't you think?

GCB gets punny in its episode called "Adam and Eve's Rib," which capitalizes on presumed cultural knowledge of the Genesis 2 account about Eve being created from Adam's rib. The episode spins a feminist thread as it plays off of the not-so-feminist biblical narrative.

When John Locke finds two skeletons in this epic TV show, he dubs them Adam and Eve. Why? He thinks they were the first two people to live on the oh-so-crazy island.

This is a premium product

Tired of ads?

Join today and never see them again.

Please Wait...