- The Book of Genesis Illustrated by R. Crumb © 2009
- W. W. Norton & Company
- 224 pages
I couldn’t resist ordering this once I read the cover:
The first book
of the bible
NOTHING LEFT OUT!
I taught through Genesis a few years ago, and realized just what “nothing left out” would mean!
I was pleasantly surprised by how faithful Crumb was to the text. He took a scholarly translation (Robert Alter’s The Five Books of Moses), and worked diligently to illustrate it. This isn’t some gratuitous parody or vain satire. This is God’s word . . . with pictures.
Much of the criticism about Crumb’s work centres on his depiction of God as a shiny old man with a monstrous beard. I tend to agree—God’s not an elderly man with eccentric facial hair. That said, what image should an illustrator use for a person who walked with Adam in the cool of the evening and who appeared to his chosen people? He clearly showed up in some form they could comprehend!
If you’re easily offended, just ignore this book. If you’re curious and want to better visualize the Genesis narratives, give it a try.