Righting America at the Creation Museum by Susan L. Trollinger, William Vance Trollinger Jr.
Baltimore, MD : Johns Hopkins University Press, 2016. 316 pages. Illustrated. Price: $26.95 ISBN: 978-1421419510 1421419513
Series: Medicine, Science, and Religion in Historical Context
Expected publication date: April 29, 2016
Summary: On May 28, 2007, the Creation Museum opened in Petersburg, Kentucky. Aimed at scientifically demonstrating that the universe was created less than ten thousand years ago by a Judeo-Christian god, the museum is hugely popular, attracting millions of visitors over the past eight years. Surrounded by themed topiary gardens and a petting zoo with camel rides, the site conjures up images of a religious Disneyland. Inside, visitors are met by dinosaurs at every turn and by a replica of the Garden of Eden that features the Tree of Life, the serpent, and Adam and Eve.
In Righting America at the Creation Museum, Susan L. Trollinger and William Vance Trollinger, Jr., take readers on a fascinating tour of the museum. The Trollingers vividly describe and analyze its vast array of exhibits, placards, dioramas, and videos, from the Culture in Crisis Room, where videos depict sinful characters watching pornography or considering abortion, to the Natural Selection Room, where placards argue that natural selection doesn’t lead to evolution. The book also traces the rise of creationism and the history of fundamentalism in America.
This compelling book reveals that the Creation Museum is a remarkably complex phenomenon, at once a “natural history” museum at odds with contemporary science, an extended brief for the Bible as the literally true and errorless word of God, and a powerful and unflinching argument on behalf of the Christian right.
Susan L. Trollinger is an associate professor of English at the University of Dayton. She is the author of Selling the Amish: The Tourism of Nostalgia. William Vance Trollinger, Jr., is a professor of history at the University of Dayton. He is the author of God’s Empire: William Bell Riley and Midwestern Fundamentalism.
Table of contents (tenative):
Chapter 1 – Museum
Chapter 2 – Science
Chapter 3 – Bible
Chapter 4 – Politics
Chapter 5 – Judgement