Some of you may have already seen the new column at Patheos.com’s Mormon Portal launched last week. The brainchild of two JI bloggers, Peculiar People aims to provide “commentary on culture, politics, the humanities, sports, the arts, and so on through the lens of Mormonism.” Featuring a talented team of contributors—including our own Ben P, Matt B, Ryan T, Max M, and myself, along with present and prior JI (guest) bloggers Rachel Cope, Heidi Harris, Rachael Givens, and David Howlett and a whole slew of other brilliant scholars of Mormon history and culture (Patrick Mason, Susanna Morrill, Taylor Petrey, Richard Livingston, Kate Holbrook, Seth Perry, Xarissa Holdaway, Emily Belanger, and Alan Hurst)—the column will appear twice weekly (Monday and Wednesday). We hope to attract both Mormon and non-Mormon readers, and invite those of you who follow JI regularly to check in over there occasionally, too.
Of course, those writing at Peculiar People will continue to blog here at the Juvenile Instructor. We see the two efforts as complimenting one another, with the JI continuing to focus primarily on Mormon history in all of its manifestations and PP to more explicitly consider current events; Mormons and Mormonism in popular culture and the public square. For more information on PP’s vision and aims, be sure and read Matt’s introductory post. And then check out Ben’s thoughtful commentary on “Mitt Romney, Mormonism, and the Tensions of an ‘America Religion.'” My semi-related thoughts on the status of Mormons as assimilated Americans today can be read here. And future columns from the many other contributors will appear in the coming weeks and months. If you’re on facebook, “like” Peculiar People’s page and keep up with new columns there. Thanks for your support!