UD faculty publish book examining Creation Museum

The book, “Righting America at the Creation Museum” by Susan and William Trollinger, offers fresh insight into how Answers in Genesis validates and promotes young Earth creationism to millions of visitors and what that might mean for America, according to a media release.

The book examines the rise of creationism in America, and the role of the museum in supporting the politics of the Christian right, according to a release from University of Dayton.

The Creation Museum’s companion $91 million Ark Encounter theme park opens July 7. The new attraction will include a giant timber structure resembling a boat that seeks to match the Ark as described in Genesis, according to a release.

“We took the museum very seriously, taking what it says about itself as a museum, the science it says it includes and its commitment to biblical authority, and compared those claims with what is actually said and seen in the museum,” said historian Bill Trollinger, who studies American fundamentalism.

In the book’s introduction, the Trollingers say, “The Creation Museum seeks to shape Christianity and Christians in powerful ways that will have a lasting impact on American life. All of us have a stake in understanding what is happening at the museum and its role in preparing and arming crusaders for the ongoing culture war that polarizes and poisons U.S. religion and politics.”

Reviews of the book have appeared in the Los Angeles Times and the Chicago Tribune, among others.

The Trollingers began studying the museum in 2007 and were intrigued by its popularity and curious about the messages it was sending, according to the university.

“During at least seven visits to the museum, they conducted a detailed analysis of the museum’s content, state-of-the-art technology, exhibits, dioramas, videos and other displays,” states a media release.

Published by Johns Hopkins University Press, the book is available in hardcover for $26.95 and as an e-book.

The result is a “…carefully researched, engagingly written book” that “takes readers on a virtual tour of the Creation Museum … This book is, to my knowledge, also the first of its kind,” wrote Ronald L. Numbers, of the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

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