Saramago’s Jesus is the son not of God but of Joseph. Mary Magdalene is his lover not his convert. In the wilderness he tussles not with the. Or is our knowledge more a product of myth and legend? José Saramago’s fictional account of The Gospel According to Jesus Christ provides. A retelling of Jesus Christ’s life not as the holiest man in the universe but as a man, an everyday man, who is reluctant to take on the duties.

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During that time, he authored a long list of novels that still are not only potent and impactful enough to deeply affect their readers, but are also mostly controversial. During his lifetime, many critics, notably Harold Bloom, described Saramago as the greatest living novelist. Today, even after his demise, he retains an important place in the history of literature and, some chrixt say, in the interpretation of history.

The Gospel According to Jesus Christ.

Called O Evangelho Segundo Jesus Cristo in the original Portuguese version that was published inthis book was released in English in the year Despite the title, the novel is narrated in third person, but Jwsus narrator remains concerned with Jesus’ perspective throughout the book. In the first hundred or so pages of the novel, the main character appears to be the carpenter Joseph, the father of Jesus, the man.

The Gospel According to Jesus Christ by José Saramago

After Joseph’s death, the readers follow Jesus throughout the course of his life, and Saramago pays particular attention to the psychological effects that being the son of Thee might have on a person. It is perhaps not surprising that The Gospel According to Jesus Christ generated mixed reactions when it was published in ghe Catholics in particular spoke out against the work, which is a long way from depicting Jesus, and God who appears as a character in the novel and speaks directly to Jesus as unequivocally good.


Inthe Portuguese government went so far as to censor the novel by removing it from the shortlist of a prestigious literary prize in This event had a profound impact on Saramago’s life. In order to protest Portugal’s censorship practices, Saramago went into voluntary exile on a Spanish island. He remained there until he died in Despite its potentially offensive nature, The Gospel According to Jesus Christ provides a unique portrait of the life of Jesus, and ends with a remarkable interpretation of the events of Jesus’ death.

One could describe the majority of the novel as entertaining, heartfelt, and well-written, but it is in the later chapters that The Gospel Gosspel to Jesus Christ really makes its literary mark. Without giving too much away, let accordig suffice to say that God reveals his plan for Jesus, and Jesus is not entirely accorring that he likes the way history will unfold after he dies on the cross, leading to a religion being founded in his name.

A Review of José Saramago’s ‘The Gospel According to Jesus Christ’

Casual readers will find a lot to think about in Saramago’s gospel as it points out the consequences of Jesus’ life and crucifixion. Those who are aaccording to give these ideas a little thought will find The Gospel According to Jesus Christ even more rewarding. Beyond providing a rebellious interpretation of the Christ story, Zccording delves into theology and questions about the human nature in an accessible way; something that has rarely chrlst achieved in the past.


One of the greatest things about reading The Gospel According to Jesus Christ is that after taking in the story and understanding the interpretation and alternative theology that Saramago offers, the reader is led to consider matters at a more abstract level. The novel raises questions like: What else is implied by the idea of the Judeo-Christian God?

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The Gospel According to Jesus Christ

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