Reading Genesis

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Pub Date Mar 12 2024 | Archive Date Apr 08 2024

Description

INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

One of our greatest novelists and thinkers presents a radiant, thrilling interpretation of the book of Genesis.

For generations, the book of Genesis has been treated by scholars as a collection of documents by various hands, expressing different factional interests, with borrowings from other ancient literatures that mark the text as derivative. In other words, academic interpretation of Genesis has centered on the question of its basic coherency, just as fundamentalist interpretation has centered on the question of the appropriateness of reading it as literally true.

Both of these approaches preclude an appreciation of its greatness as literature, its rich articulation and exploration of themes that resonate through the whole of Scripture. Marilynne Robinson’s Reading Genesis, which includes the full text of the King James Version of the book, is a powerful consideration of the profound meanings and promise of God’s enduring covenant with humanity. This magisterial book radiates gratitude for the constancy and benevolence of God’s abiding faith in Creation.

INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

One of our greatest novelists and thinkers presents a radiant, thrilling interpretation of the book of Genesis.

For generations, the book of Genesis has been treated...


A Note From the Publisher

Marilynne Robinson is the author of Gilead, winner of the 2005 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction and the National Book Critics Circle Award; Home (2008), winner of the Orange Prize and the Los Angeles Times Book Prize; Lila (2014), winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award; and Jack (2020), a New York Times bestseller. Her first novel, Housekeeping (1980), won the PEN/Hemingway Award. Robinson’s nonfiction books include The Givenness of Things (2015), When I Was a Child I Read Books (2012), Absence of Mind (2010), The Death of Adam (1998), and Mother Country (1989). She is the recipient of a 2012 National Humanities Medal, awarded by President Barack Obama, for “her grace and intelligence in writing.” Robinson lives in California

Marilynne Robinson is the author of Gilead, winner of the 2005 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction and the National Book Critics Circle Award; Home (2008), winner of the Orange Prize and the Los Angeles Times...


Advance Praise

“Like so much of Robinson’s writing, [Reading Genesis] is alive with questions of kindness, community and how to express what we so often struggle to put into words.” —David Marchese, The New York Times Magazine

"The genius of Reading Genesis lies in its collapse of the space between the holy and the mundane, the metaphysical and the physical." —Judith Shulevitz, The Atlantic

★ "In this illuminating work of biblical analysis, Pulitzer Prize–winning novelist Robinson, whose Gilead series contains a variety of Christian themes, takes readers on a dedicated layperson’s journey through the Book of Genesis. The author meanders delightfully through the text, ruminating on one tale after another while searching for themes and mining for universal truths . . . [A] luminous exegesis." Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

★ "Robinson skillfully melds her literary interpretation with her theological one . . . Like the biblical book it explicates, Robinson’s offering is demanding, intense, and best read slowly." Publishers Weekly (starred review)

"A literary, scholarly, and personal reading of Genesis . . . Throughout this deeply involving and enlightening exegesis, Robinson links Genesis to the profound dilemmas of our time." —Donna Seaman, Booklist

“Like so much of Robinson’s writing, [Reading Genesis] is alive with questions of kindness, community and how to express what we so often struggle to put into words.” —David Marchese, The New York...


Available Editions

EDITION Other Format
ISBN 9780374299408
PRICE $29.00 (USD)
PAGES 240

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Average rating from 19 members


Featured Reviews

A truly impressive piece of interpretive work. Robinson makes Genesis come alive in its narrative and highlights its exceptional nature in comparison to ancient near east literature against which it is measured. A powerful and deeply personal reflection, informed by obvious great literary, historical, and biblical expertise.

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Rarely has theological prose been as beautifully poetic and lyrical as in Marilynne Robinson's Reading Genesis. Robinson's mastery of the English language, when applied to theological inquiry, makes for a seriously beautiful and deeply enjoyable read. Even if one were to disagree with some of her conclusions, as many conservative evangelicals likely will, Robinson's commitment to awe, allowing and embracing the mystery of a God that can be known and yet remains beyond mankind's understanding and grasp, and to a conviction that there is a goodness found in Him that is better than we think, surpassing human understanding and, frequently, disturbing our sense of justice, makes Reading Genesis worthwhile, at times convicting, and essential.

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