We analyzed four different artistic depictions of the fall from Italy, Japan, Indonesia and an American child’s coloring book. After each picture, I asked the students to discuss in their groups, “What do you see?” and “What do you wonder about?” At the end, I asked them whether each was a good reading or a bad reading of the text. We then voted on which picture was the “best” reading of Genesis 3.
This exercise was very effective. There was a lot of discussion, and the students noticed some very interesting connections in the art and in the text (often that I missed). It began to push them on what the text says, and how what it says can be encountered in different cultures and traditions.