From back cover:
Believing is one thing, deciding what to believe is harder for a number of reasons, not the least of which is that what is known and what is not known is a moving target. The world changes daily as new revelations burst onto the scene in religion, science, social studies, and the humanities.
For instance, Mormons once believed that Adam's and Eve's son Cain, who was cursed by God to live forever, sometimes appeared to people, out of boredom or by chance, in forests or on their farms. However, belief in Cain has become less fashionable and some Mormons now interpret what they see at dusk and on Boy Scout outings to be Big Foot. Such interpretations may themselves give way in the future to more informed conclusions as more evidence is assembled, but for now people act as best they can with the available data.
This collection of fifteen articles provides readers with the most recent scholarship in Mormon studies, the authors presenting history and faith as alive and relevant to the modern world. Where new ideas impinge on faith, it is up to us to interpret and manage these views. Rather than tremble in the face of change, we can look confidently at the empirical world through the twin lenses of religious heritage and a grounding in secular learning.
The contributors to this anthology are Gary James Bergera, Matthew Bowman, Martha Bradley-Evans, Newell G. Bringhurst, Samuel M. Brown, Claudia L. Bushman, Brian Q. Cannon, Douglas J. Davies, Kathleen Flake, Lawrence Foster, Reinhold R. Hill, Jacob W. Olmstead, Rebecca de Schweinitz, Jonathan A. Stapley, Brian H. Stuy, Stephen C. Taysom, and Kristine Wright.
Table of Contents
- The Private versus Public David O. McKay: Profile of a Complex Personality, Newell G. Bringhurst
- Sex and Prophetic Power: A Comparison of John Humphrey Noyes, Founder of the Oneida Community, with Joseph Smith Jr., the Mormon Prophet, Lawrence Foster
- Building Community: The Fundamentalist Mormon Concept of Space, Martha Bradley-Evans
- Mormon Studies in a European Setting, Douglas J. Davies
- Wilford Woodruff's Vision of the Signers of the Declaration of Independence, Brian H. Stuy
- A Mormon Bigfoot: David Patten's Cain and the Conception of Evil in LDS Folklore, Matthew Bowman
- The Forms and the Power: The Development of Mormon Ritual Healing to 1847, Jonathan A. Stapley and Kristine Wright
- A Uniform and Common Recollection: Joseph Smith's Legacy, Polygamy, and Public Memory, 1852-2002, Stephen C. Taysom
- Re-placing Memory: Latter-day Saint Use of Historical Monuments and Narrative in the Early Twentieth Century, Kathleen Flake
- The Translator and the Ghostwriter: Joseph Smith and William W. Phelps, Samuel M. Brown
- "Scandalous Films": The Campaign to Suppress Anti-Mormon Motion Pictures, 1911–1912, Brian Q. Cannon and Jacob W. Olmstead
- Buckeye's Laments: Two Early Insider Exposés of Mormon Polygamy, Gary James Bergera
- God's Chosen People: Mormon Representations of the Jewish Other in Holocaust Literature, Reinhold R. Hill
- Preaching the Gospel of Church and Sex: Mormon Women's Fiction in the Young Woman's Journal, 1889–1910, Rebecca de Schweinitz
- Edward W. Tullidge and The Women of Mormondom, Claudia L. Bushman
About the Contributors