Jeff P. piqued my interest in this, so I took a look at it. I found it quite interesting. Though not a believer himself, Crumb is quite respectful of and faithful to the original text. There's a certain amount of nudity and sex and violence in it, but none that isn't in the Book itself.

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There is a great review, by the Biblical translator who helped Crumb but has no financial stake in the book, in this month's New Republic.
Thanks for the link, Bill. I'll be sure to read it later (if I remember!).

I do still plan to post a few thoughts on Genesis, but so far I haven't found the time.
"I stress that it is an interpretation, because the extremely concise biblical narrative, abounding in hints and gaps and ellipses, famously demands interpretation. (Gershom Scholem once observed that the imperative for interpretation is the hallmark of all canonical texts.)"

I couldn't have said it better myself. (No, really... I couldn't have.)
I have this book as well, but I haven't even cracked it open yet. I was really pleased that my shop pulled a copy for me, as I hadn't ordered one.
PowerBook Pete said:
Mark Sullivan said:
Also started The Book of Genesis Illustrated by R. Crumb (the library's copies just came in). Wasn't sure how much I'd want to read in one sitting, but I wound up getting eleven chapters in. Turns out I don't remember Genesis very well, and I wanted to find out what happens next! Even Crumb can't make the "begots" very interesting, but he goes to town on the Flood. I'd forgotten how brief the story of the Tower of Babel is, and that's about where I stopped.

Orson Bean was on "The Dennis Miller Show" last Thursday and praised the Crumb book. He said he picks it up and rereads it every two or three days.

Thanks, Baron.
Actually, Mark, I'd disagree with that to say Crumb can make the "begots" interesting!

The amount of research he put into the clothing, the faces, etc. is nothing less than fascinating to me.
Jeff of Earth-J said:
Actually, Mark, I'd disagree with that to say Crumb can make the "begots" interesting!

The amount of research he put into the clothing, the faces, etc. is nothing less than fascinating to me.

That's true. Crumb never looks like he's coasting; there's never anything less than meticulous attention to detail. But I still think it doesn't quite make it to the level of "interesting," because there's no story during those passages. The lineage recitations in the later verses are even worse, although the characterization is still impressive.
All right, I'll meet you half way and admit there's no story on those pages, but Crumb's "meticulous attention to detail" makes that section more interesting (to me, any way) than the original (i.e., non-illustrated) version.

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