In a mere 23 days, the Mormon History Association’s meetings will convene in Layton, Utah. As you might imagine, we at JI are very excited to hear from the best and brightest in Mormon History. There are a few events/items worth mentioning: (more…)
The Digital Public Library of America, a project that has been in development for a few years, is now live on the Internet. The DPLA follows in the footsteps of Europeana, a similar initiative in the EU that brings together diverse collections throughout the European Union’s libraries, archives, and museums. One way of thinking about the DPLA is to see it as a super-catalog of materials spread across the contiguous United States in thousands of local, state, and federal institutions. The current “beta” version of the site already has 2+ million records aggregated from “hubs” such as the Digital Library of Georgia, Kentucky Digital Library, Minnesota Digital Library, ArtStor, Biodiversity Heritage Library, National Archives and Records Administration, New York Public Library, University of Virginia, Mountain West Digital Library, etc. Additional partners are being announced almost daily. So pump yourself up and get searching! (more…)
The Mormon Women’s History Initiative Team (here) is pleased to announce an Evening with the Editors and Authors of Women of Faith in the Latter Days, Volume 2, on Tuesday, April 9, 2013, at 7:00 p.m., at the 10th Ward Building in Salt Lake City.
Please join us for a thoughtful discussion of Mormon women’s biography, featuring editors Brittany Chapman and Rick Turley, a few featured authors of the biographies (to be announced), a brief program, refreshments, and opportunities to meet, mingle, and purchase books. For an excellent review of Women of Faith, Volume 2, see Tona’s post here, and for a discussion of the complications of using biography in Mormon women’s history, you may reread Janiece’s excellent post here.
Also, look for biographies in Volume 2 by J.I.’s own Jenny R. and Andrea R-M. Come and celebrate this excellent series!
Hope to see you there.
Great news today from the Maxwell Institute. For their announcement, hosted on their new blog, see here.
The emerging (sub)field of Mormon studies has proven to be as multivocal as it is diverse. Though history has long been the dominant discipline of Mormon academic research, other fields are finally staking their claim. Interdisciplinary journals like Dialogue and BYU Studies Quarterly are featuring provocative works in theology, literature, musicology, and political science. There have been an explosion of journals covering the field, to the point that one could say there is more quantity than quality. We have seen an increase in quality books, with many more to come. There are conferences throughout the nation (and lately, to a very limited extent, world), and academic chairs and programs cropping up at prestigious universities. Even the New York Times is catching on to the game. Sometimes it can be easy to get lost in such a worldwind. (more…)
From our friends at the John Whitmer Historical Association:
John Whitmer Historical Association gives scholarships promising scholars. The purpose of the scholarship program is to encourage and support scholarly participation in JWHA’s central mission — studies of Community of Christ or other denominations of the Latter Day Saint movement — by promising scholars, (particularly students). (more…)
Journal of Mormon History
Call for Articles
Special Issue on Mormonism and Race
To be published in the summer issue of 2014
Finished papers due July 31, 2013
Max Perry Mueller: email@example.com
Prof. Gina Colvin: firstname.lastname@example.org
Goals of the Journal’s special issue on Mormonism and race:
This special issue of the Journal of Mormon History aims to broaden and deepen the conversation on Mormonism and race beyond the historical focus on the ban on black men from the Mormon priesthood, and its emphasis on the U.S. experience. In particular we aim to understand “race” beyond the black-white (European-African) binary. We welcome articles ranging in historical focus from the Mormon movement’s founding to the present day. Articles exploring international encounters, race and gender, and race and politics, and race and class are of particular interest.
Papers should be original work. Wherever appropriate, concrete evaluation results should be included. Submissions will be judged on originality, technical strength, primary sources, significance, and interest to our readers. Papers should range from 6,000 to 8,000 words. Please submit manuscripts simultaneously to both of the Special Editors listed above. Include separately a brief CV or biography.
Friend of JI and all-around awesome person Melissa Inouye has initiated a wonderful project. Can you help?
As Mormonism continues to develop internationally, so too does the field of Mormon studies. More and more foreign scholars are looking to do work in the area, but often lack the requisite resources. The International Mormon Studies Book Project is a new effort to provide critical resources for developing Mormon studies internationally by purchasing books to form a base Mormon studies collection at institutions where scholars have demonstrated a keen interest in doing research on Mormonism. Currently, institutions interested in partnering with the IMS Book Project span the globe, from Asia to Australia to Europe. The first two IMS Book Project collections are slated for donation to Jianghan University?????) in Wuhan, China, and the newly formed French Institute for Research on Mormonism (Institut Français pour la Recherche sur le Mormonisme) in Bordeaux, France. (more…)
The Mormon Studies Group of the American Academy of Religion is accepting paper proposals for the AAR Annual Meeting in Baltimore, Maryland, November 23-26, 2013. Proposal submissions are due on March 1. We are particularly looking for papers on the following topics: (more…)
The Church History Department announces an opening for a one-year internship with the Joseph Smith Papers Project. This will be a full-time temporary position beginning in April 2012. (more…)
In February 1926, Harvard-trained historian Carter G. Woodson inaugurated Negro History Week, which was designed to highlight and celebrate African American contributions to American history and life. He chose February because both Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass were born in that month, hoping that remembering the births of these two men would improve race relations in the United States. A half century later, in the wake of post-World War II Third World decolonization, the Civil Rights Movement, and in honor of the bicentennial, Gerald R. Ford expanded the week to a month and nationalized February as Black History Month in 1976. The move reflected the ways that social historians were changing how American history was written and taught, shifting way from “great white man” narratives to include the experiences of blacks and other racial minorities as well as women of all races.
In honor of Black History Month 2013, the Juvenile Instructor will be hosting a month-long series examining the history of black experiences with Mormonism. We have invited leading experts on the subject to participate in the series, in hopes of highlighting cutting-edge scholarship and increasing dialogue among scholars and our readers on the importance of blacks in Mormon history. Some JI bloggers will also contribute to the series, starting tomorrow with J. Stapley’s opening post. At the conclusion of the series, our resident expert on the subject, Max, will offer concluding thoughts.
N.B. In recent years, there has been debate over whether dedicating one month to black history gives Americans a pass to forget the subject for the remainder of the year. We at the JI believe that Mormon history should be racially inclusive, regardless of the month, although we also see some benefit in concentrating our discussion this month for the reasons discussed above.
For prior JI posts on the priesthood/temple ban and black experiences with Mormonism, see here.
We’re pleased to announce that we’ve added another bright, young historian to our ranks, J Stuart. Here’s how he describes himself: (more…)
I am feeling the stirrings of envy as I see advertisements for the annual Summer Seminar on Mormon Culture. Rules about repeating seminars prohibit me from jumping at the chance to immerse myself for six weeks in explorations of the theology and history of spiritual gifts, ordinances, and priesthood authority in LDS thought. That triad is impossibly juicy, and I’m anxious to see what presentations and papers emerge out of this year’s group.
Terryl Givens is conducting this summer’s session (June 3 – July 12, 2013), which continues the series started by Richard Bushman and hosted by the Neal A. Maxwell Institute over fifteen years ago. The first series of summer seminars on “Joseph Smith and His Times” ran from 1997 to 2002. In 2003 Claudia Bushman conducted a seminar on “Mormon Women in the Twentieth Century.” In recent years, Richard Bushman and Terryl Givens have expanded the Joseph Smith seminar series to broader topics, such as “Mormon Thought 1845-1890: Dealing with the Joseph Smith Legacy;” and “Mormon Thinkers 1890 to 1930,” and with the help of Matthew Grow, “Parley and Orson Pratt and 19th-century Mormon Thought.” The last two summers, Richard Bushman organized the seminar around the history and context of the golden plates, and this summer, Terryl Givens will be picking back up the history of Mormon thought with “Workings of the Spirit and Works of the Priesthood: Gifts and Ordinances in LDS Thought and Practice.” (more…)
For those unable to attend this year’s annual American Historical Association held in New Orleans last week, Twitter is a godsend, and on Saturday night, the site was all abuzz as Laurie Maffly-Kipp, professor of Religious Studies at UNC-Chapel Hill, delivered the presidential address at the annual meeting of the American Society of Church History. Entitled “The Burden of Church History,” Maffly-Kipp’s address was a call to members of the ASCH to not abandon church history as the field of American religious history moves further away from institutional histories in pursuit of histories that analyze spirituality and deconstruct the meaning of religion. I’ve yet to read the entire address, but Elesha Coffman has posted a helpful summary and insightful response at Religion in American History that I encourage all to read. (more…)
From William and Mary graduate student and friend of JI Spencer Wells:
CFP: No Person Shall Bee Any Wise Molested: Religious Freedom, Cultural Conflict, and the Moral Role of the State
A conference planned for October 3 – 6, 2013, in Newport and Providence, Rhode Island, organized by the Newport Historical Society, the Pell Center for International Relations and Public Policy, Salve Regina University, the George Washington Institute for Religious Freedom, the John Carter Brown Library, and Brown University to mark the 350th anniversary of the 1663 Rhode Island Charter. (more…)
It’s hard to believe that it’s been five years since that fateful day at J-Dawgs when five lowly BYU students decided to start a blog devoted to the academic study of Mormon history. Yup, that’s right. The Juvenile Instructor turns 5 today. We’ve added new bloggers (there’s 25 of us now! 25!), regretfully said goodbye to a couple of others, and grown and developed and (hopefully) improved during that time. I’ll offer my own belief that the JI is bigger and better and stronger than it’s ever been. And a lot of that has to do with you, our readers. Among the most regular comments I hear from people about the JI is how much they appreciate and enjoy the quality of conversation that goes on in the comments section, and I tend to agree. For those that have been with us since the beginning, thanks for sticking around. And for those who only recently found the blog, thanks for stopping by. We hope you’ll visit often. (more…)
We thought that some of the New England branch of the JI community might be interested in this upcoming event at Brandeis University:
“The Faces of Eve: Varieties of Mormon Feminism”
A lecture by Janet Bennion, author of Polygamy in Primetime
Thursday, October 25, 2012, 7:00 to 9:00pm
Hadassah-Brandeis Institute, Epstein Building, Brandeis University
515 South Street, Waltham MA 02454
Media portrayals of Mormon women have focused on the potential for oppression and abuse within both the mainline church and fundamentalists sects. Drawing on her 17 years of fieldwork among fundamentalist polygamous Mormons, Janet Bennion argues that some “sister wives” find fulfillment and even empowerment through their domestic arrangements. In this lecture, she will be joined by historian Laurel Ulrich to look beyond the official patriarchy and find the subtle feminisms Mormon women embody.
Janet Bennion is a professor of social sciences at Lyndon State College in Vermont. Her latest book, “Polygamy in Primetime: Media, Gender, and Politics in Mormon Fundamentalism”, was published in 2012 by the Brandeis Series on Gender, Culture, Religion, and Law, a collaboration between the HBI and the University Press of New England.
Free and open to the public.
Parking in Epstein Lot.
RSVP encouraged: email@example.com
After too much waiting, being swamped at work, and my own timidity, I’d like to share my notes from the recent blogger event the Church History Library hosted for the release of Histories Volume 2 of the Joseph Smith Papers. (more…)
The Juvenile Instructor is pleased to announce a round table discussion of one of the most important works to appear on Mormon history in recent memory–John G. Turner‘s Brigham Young: Pioneer Prophet. Turner’s biography, published by Harvard University Press, represents perhaps the apex of what I’ve called elsewhere a “Brigham Young Revival,” as historians have revisited the second Mormon prophet with renewed vigor after a long period of scholarly neglect. In the early twentieth century, historians found Brigham Young to be a far more interesting figure than Joseph Smith, since the former embodied scholars’ fascination with the frontier as the source of American culture and distinctiveness. Smith, by contrast, was usually cast as a womanizing deceiver who preyed upon credulous dupes, whose achievements paled in comparison to those of his successor. By the 1940s, however, scholars began to see Smith in a more positive light, producing several important studies and biographies, while the interest in Young waned. In the post-Civil Rights era, Young’s primary importance for historians lay in his racial policies and controversial theological teachings. Only Leonard Arrington published a major work on Young during this period, whose 1985 Brigham Young: American Moses reflected an earlier era of frontier historiography. (more…)
From our friends at the Church History Department, Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints:
Purpose and Responsibilities
The Church History Department announces an opening for a historian/writer with an emphasis on women’s history within the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Duties will include researching and writing, in collaboration with others, documentary and narrative histories on the experience of Latter-day Saint women. (more…)