The plot and themes in Genesis offer numerous avenues of critical investigation. D. J. A. Clines examines the ways in which Genesis provides hints about the plot and meaning of the Bible. One such way is the series of “announcements” made by God. Clines studies how these announcements are fulfilled and what they lead the reader to believe. He maintains that often the announcements made in Genesis are not brought to fulfillment until much later in the Bible, as late as 2 Kings 25. In conclusion, Clines states that Genesis foreshadows the events to come in subsequent chapters of the Bible. Thematic studies of Genesis are another area of scholarly analysis. Edwin M. Good examines Genesis' thematic irony, which Good defines as the conjunction of several episodes which all point to an ironic theme or motif. Good identifies the thematic irony in a number of stories, including the stories of creation, Cain and Abel, the flood, Abraham, Jacob, and Joseph. The ironic theme of the first eleven chapters of Genesis, argues Good, is the perception of the incongruity between God's purpose in creating man, and man's actual nature. Like Good, D. J. A. Clines searches for the theme of Genesis 1-11. Clines offers two possible versions of the theme of this portion of Genesis : that man destroys God's creation, and despite God's forgiveness and/or punishment, sin continues; or: that no matter how severe man's sin, God's grace continues to save mankind from the consequences of sin. Another portion of the Genesis text singled out for thematic study is the story of Adam and Eve. Alan Jon Hauser contends that the theme of intimacy in Genesis 2 (God's creation of man and woman) is intertwined with the theme of alienation in Genesis 3 (man and woman's original sin against God). This dual theme, argues Hauser, integrates the narrative and is used as a literary device by the author to reveal the disruption of order that occurs in day-to-day life. While Hauser's analysis focuses on the disorder that apparently results from the sin of Adam and Eve, other critics view the end of this tale somewhat differently. Dan E. Burns studies the inconsistencies within this myth, finding that they are only problematic when viewed from a logical, rather than literary, standpoint. Burns concludes that the tale is best viewed as an awakening, rather than the fall of man. Similarly, Sam Dragga identifies several assumptions that are traditionally held about the Adam and Eve story, assumptions which yield a tragic interpretation of the myth. Dragga argues that when the connotations of these assumptions—such as the assumptions that the serpent's intentions are malicious or that God is omnipotent—are properly understood, the story may be viewed as one of man's liberation, rather than the fall of humanity.
In theatre, tension of relationships is concerned with character relationships in the play. Obvious relationships are those that are bound by love or marriage (husband/wife), but also think of the tension in relationships in some of Shakespeare’s plays between siblings with differing motives or ambitions (brother/sister) and also parents and their children (King Lear and his three daughters, for example). Status is often a factor in character relationships, defining which characters are more important. Tension is integral to all character relationships. If you think of everyday life, a single relationship between any two people is often defined by factors such as circumstance, environment, wealth etc. Relationships can be casual, romantic, family, professional. Relationships can also be open or closed (secrets withheld from each other). All of these types of relationships occur in plays for the theatre, as playwrights to some extent are attempting to mirror familiar aspects of real life on stage for their audience. Tension in character relationships can be achieved by plot, dialogue, movement, gesture, body language etc.