The Grand Inquisitor

Influence on other media

  • The composer Bernd Alois Zimmermann used this tale, along with Book of Ecclesiastes, in his oratorio Ecclesiastical Action. He committed suicide five days later after composing the piece.[2]
  • The scene is the basis of the play Only We Who Guard the Mystery Shall Be Unhappy by Tony Kushner.
  • "Talitha Cumi", the third-season finale of The X-Files, borrowed heavily from this parable for an interrogation between The Smoking Man and Jeremiah Smith (as the Inquisitor and Jesus, respectively).[3]
  • Noam Chomsky refers to The Grand Inquisitor in the first chapter of his book Necessary Illusions.[4]
  • Aldous Huxley refers to The Grand Inquisitor in the last chapter of his book Brave New World Revisited.
  • The Ocean Collective refer to The Grand Inquisitor in their album Anthropocentric, running the parable across three songs.
  • David Bentley Hart refers to The Grand Inquisitor in Section V of Chapter One of his book The Doors of the Sea: Where was God in the Tsunami?
  • It was filmed as 'Inquisition[5]' in 2002 for Channel 5 in the UK, starring Sir Derek Jacobi as the Cardinal Grand Inquisitor.
  • David Foster Wallace refers to The Grand Inquisitor on pages 968-69 of his book Infinite Jest.
  • Christian Filostrat refers to "The Grand Inquisitor" on page 49 of his book Jerome's Pillows.
  • Irvin D. Yalom refers to The Grand Inquisitor in chapter 27 of his book The Gift of Therapy.[6]
  • Peter Brook produced a play of this starring Bruce Myers, performed at The Barbican, London, in February 2006. The Independent criticised the casting of Myers saying "And he conveys no sense of the cardinal's torment, of his arrival at this point after a lifetime of suffering, as opposed to Myers' smug superiority" whilst The Guardian merely focused on a lack of depth saying "But, while the brief evening has a stony severity, it is not one that admits of argument or dramatic debate.".

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