Cookies Policy
X

This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies.

I accept this policy

Find out more here

The Gospel of Thomas (Pynchon): Abandoning Eschatology in Gravity’s Rainbow

No metrics data to plot.
The attempt to load metrics for this article has failed.
The attempt to plot a graph for these metrics has failed.
The full text of this article is not currently available.

Brill’s MyBook program is exclusively available on BrillOnline Books and Journals. Students and scholars affiliated with an institution that has purchased a Brill E-Book on the BrillOnline platform automatically have access to the MyBook option for the title(s) acquired by the Library. Brill MyBook is a print-on-demand paperback copy which is sold at a favorably uniform low price.

Access this article

+ Tax (if applicable)
Add to Favorites
You must be logged in to use this functionality

image of Religion and the Arts

It is tempting to read Thomas Pynchon’s sprawling masterpiece Gravity’s Rainbow—with its shell-shocked refugees fleeing across a missile-pocked, post-war landscape—as an eschatological text that plays out religious end-times scenarios. However, an invented citation from the non-canonical Gospel of Thomas included as a chapter epigraph—“Dear Mom, I put a couple of people in hell today”—suggests that we should do otherwise. In grafting a playful fragment about Jesus, judgment, and hell onto Thomas, Pynchon parodies a common need to read eschatological themes back into non-eschatological texts. In doing so, he also provides a powerful heuristic for interpreting his own book. Ultimately, Pynchon’s own rocket-gospel is likewise a non-eschatological text. Like Thomas, Gravity’s Rainbow stymies readers’ efforts to derive a clear eschatology from it—or to read one back into it. In this essay, I contend that Pynchon enacts a number of strategies to keep his audience from reading classic end-times scenarios into his own work, all of which are prefigured by the Gospel of Thomas.

Affiliations: 1: Marymount Manhattan College

10.1163/107992610X12592913031865
/content/journals/10.1163/107992610x12592913031865
dcterms_title,pub_keyword,dcterms_description,pub_author
6
3
Loading
Loading

Full text loading...

/content/journals/10.1163/107992610x12592913031865
Loading

Data & Media loading...

http://brill.metastore.ingenta.com/content/journals/10.1163/107992610x12592913031865
Loading

Article metrics loading...

/content/journals/10.1163/107992610x12592913031865
2010-02-01
2016-12-04

Sign-in

Can't access your account?
  • Tools

  • Add to Favorites
  • Printable version
  • Email this page
  • Subscribe to ToC alert
  • Get permissions
  • Recommend to your library

    You must fill out fields marked with: *

    Librarian details
    Your details
    Why are you recommending this title?
    Select reason:
     
    Religion and the Arts — Recommend this title to your library
  • Export citations
  • Key

  • Full access
  • Open Access
  • Partial/No accessInformation