The Bible in Literature: Good Books Inspired by the Good Book
Pulitzer Prize-winning author Marilynne Robinson once wrote, “The Bible is the model for and subject of more art and thought than those of us who live within its influence, consciously or unconsciously, will ever know.” Robinson was referring to the myriad ways that writers through the years have drawn from the Bible as a source for inspiration and ideas. In this course, we will examine selections from the Bible alongside notable instances of stories that engage with the Bible through reference, retelling, and response. We’ll especially be interested in how understanding authors’ uses of biblical imagery and resonance can contribute to our understanding of their works. Readings will include excerpts from Dante’s Commedia and Milton’s Paradise Lost, Isak Dinesen’s “Sorrow-Acre,” Elie Wiesel’s The Trial of God, Flannery O’Connor’s “Revelation,” Cormac McCarthy’s The Road, Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale, and Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein.
You'll Walk Away with
- An understanding of how writers have been influenced by the Bible
- Greater familiarity with common biblical imagery, themes, and tropes
- Professionals who use critical thinking
- The curious and creative