Articles by

David G.

Communal Studies Conferences and Grants

By January 17, 2019


Matthew J. Grow is Director of the Publications Division in the Church History Department and a general editor of the Joseph Smith Papers. He is currently President of the Communal Studies Association. 

I am excited to let the Juvenile Instructor community know about two upcoming communal studies conferences as well as two opportunities for grants and two sets of awards/paper contests.

The main scholarly organization for the study of communal groups and intentional communities—past and present—in the United States is the Communal Studies Association. CSA conferences are held annually, often at the site of a historic communal group. I have found the CSA to be a very welcoming and interesting group of scholars, and there are generally several presentations on Latter-day Saint history. For some thoughts on the connections between communal studies and Latter-day Saint history, see here.

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CfP: 2020 Sperry Symposium

By December 31, 2018


THE 2020 SIDNEY B. SPERRY SYMPOSIUM: “How … and What You Worship”

Christology and Praxis in the Revelations of Joseph Smith

Call for Proposals

On 6 May 1833, Joseph Smith received a revelation which clarified Johannine teachings about Christ. It taught truths meant to help early church members “understand and know how to worship and know what [they] worship” (D&C 93:19). This revelatory reworking of the Prologue of John (John 1:1-18) shed light on both the subject of worship as well as the process of how to worship that subject. Although the immediate context of the revelation remains obscure, it uncovered truths about the nature of Christ, who “continued from grace to grace, until he received a fulness,” and linked those truths to the process of worship by instructing its audience to keep Christ’s commandments, which would allow them to “receive grace for grace.” In addressing both the who and the how of worship, the revelation deals with concepts that scholars term christology and praxis. Christology has to do with the study of the nature and mission of Christ. In light of Joseph Smith’s revelations, this study necessarily involves attention to the spiritual and intellectual quest (D&C 88:118) to “know” the Savior (John 17:3). That the revelation should insist on the “how” of worship indicates that praxis is inseparable from the knowledge of Christ: as King Benjamin taught, it is a mark of discipleship, the outward manifestation of knowledge (Mosiah 5:15). This relationship is emphasized throughout scripture, and the revelations of Joseph Smith constitute a unique scriptural setting to analyze the relationship between knowledge and practice. With this in mind, the 2020 Sperry Symposium, which will be held at Brigham Young University in October 2020, will focus on both the person of Christ and the practice of worshiping Him as outlined in the revelations of Joseph Smith. For the purpose of this symposium, “the revelations of Joseph Smith” will be understood as modern revelations received by the prophet. Strong proposals will make such revelations the central focus of their arguments, without necessarily excluding the dialogic nature of such revelations with other scriptures or the precisions they bring. More specifically, this symposium and the anticipated volume seek to understand Christ in the revelations to the first prophet of the restoration, and elucidate the practices – understood both as ordinances and daily attitudes – required of those who worship a being who grew “from grace to grace.”

Authors of Sperry papers are encouraged to find the appropriate balance between responsible scholarship and the interests of nonspecialists who are looking for accessible and engaging substance with a believing dimension. See the reverse side for a list of suggested topics. Proposals should take the form of an abstract of no more than 300 words containing all of the following: (1) the main thesis of your paper/presentation, (2) a brief outline of the components supporting your main thesis, (3) a summary of your methodology as well as the primary and secondary sources you will consult as evidence and support, and (4) a brief statement concerning how your study will make a significant contribution to previous scholarship on the work of worship and the person of Jesus Christ in Joseph Smith’s revelations. Following the abstract, please include a short separate statement (25-50 words) outlining your background, qualifications, or preparation so far to address this subject (you should already have completed some research in preparation for writing the proposal).

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CfP: WHA 2019 in Vegas UPDATE: Deadline Extended

By November 13, 2018


What happens in the West doesn’t stay in the West!

The Western History Association will be holding its 2019 meeting in Las Vegas, October 16-19, 2019. The conference theme is “What happens in the West doesn’t stay in the West” and the organizers are eager to include panels that seek to connect western history and the histories and historiographies of other parts of the nation, continent, and world. 

You can access the full call for papers here (https://www.westernhistory.org/2019). The deadline for panel and paper proposals is December 1, 2018. [UPDATE: The deadline for panel and paper proposals for the WHA conference has been extended to December 5, 2018.] The WHA is committed to promoting the full and equitable inclusion of racial and ethnic minorities, religious minorities, people with disabilities, women, LGBTQ people, and people with various ranks and career paths on this conference program. The Program Committee will encourage sessions to include diverse sets of participants, addressing gender diversity, racial and ethnic diversity, sexual diversity, religious diversity, disability-based diversity, and/or LGBTQ diversity.

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Summer Book Club: Reflections by Jared Farmer

By September 6, 2018


Over the last ten weeks, the Juvenile Instructor’s Summer Book Club has taken readers on a guided tour through Jared Farmer’s award-winning On Zion’s Mount: Mormons, Indians, and the American Landscape (Harvard UP, 2008). Jared has graciously agreed to share his reflections on the book, ten years after its initial publication.

(Posts in the series: introduction; chapter one, chapter two, chapter three, chapter four, chapter five, chapter six, chapter seven, chapter eight, chapter nine.)

 

 

“Utah, I Loved Thee”: Reflection by Jared Farmer

My gratitude to David G. and other members of Juvenile Instructor’s summer book club for their thoughtful comments about my second book, now ten years old.

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Review: Hudson, Real Native Genius

By July 30, 2018


Reproduced below are excerpts from my review of Angela Pulley Hudson’s Real Native Genius: How An Ex-Slave and a White Mormon Became Famous Indians. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2015, which appeared in the most recent issue of Mormon Historical Studies. MHS kindly granted me permission to post these excerpts. 

Angela Pulley Hudson’s Real Native Genius: How an Ex-Slave and a White Mormon Became Famous Indians, winner of the Evans Biography Award, is an engrossing dual biography of former-slave Warner McCary and his white wife, Lucy Stanton. Before this book, Mormon historians had known the McCarys primarily for their schismatic religious group in Winter Quarters and for their contribution to the development of the race-based priesthood and temple ban. Hudson, an associate professor of history at Texas A&M University, demonstrates in Real Native Genius that the McCarys’ Winter Quarters imbroglio was just one chapter in the lives of the couple, who subsequently reinvented themselves as “professional Indians”—Choctaw chief Okah Tubbee and Mohawk princess Laah Ceil Manatoi Tubbee—first as famous traveling performers and then as “Indian” medical practitioners. Hudson uses the couple’s gaudy lives as a window into the concept of “Indianness,” which she defines as “a wide-ranging set of ideas about how American Indians looked, talked, lived, and loved” (5). Real Native Genius is therefore one of a growing number of works that explore ways that Mormon history can illuminate broader themes in American history and culture.

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Jobs at the Church History Library!

By July 7, 2018


Research Assistant for the Women’s History Team

 

Job ID: 211892.

Posting Dates: 06/29/2018 – 07/13/2018

Job Description:
The Church History Department is seeking an individual with background and interest in historical research. This role will work closely with various decades of LDS Church history.
This is a full-time temporary position, anticipated to last up to 12 months. Candidates must be currently enrolled in school and/or graduated within the last 12 months.

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JI Summer Book Club: Jared Farmer’s On Zion’s Mount

By June 21, 2018


Back by popular demand, the Juvenile Instructor will be hosting its Fourth Annual Summer Book Club in 2018! This year’s book is Jared Farmer’s On Zion’s Mount: Mormons, Indians, and the American Landscape (Harvard UP, 2008).[1] The selection of Farmer’s book continues our ongoing emphasis on biography. The first two years, we read and discussed Bushman’s Rough Stone Rolling and then Newell and Avery’s Mormon Enigma, biographies of Mormonism’s founding couple. Last year, we read Ulrich’s A House Full of Females, a group biography of several women (and a few men) of the movement’s first generation. On Zion’s Mount is perhaps best understood as the biography of a place—Mount Timpanogos—and how it became such a prominent landmark in Utah.

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JSP Jobs: Editorial Assistant and Source Checker

By June 8, 2018



POSTING INFO

Posting Dates: 06/06/2018 – 06/22/2018

Job Family: Administrative

Department: Church History Department

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JMH Spotlight: Brian Q. Cannon’s Presidential Address

By May 2, 2018


Brian Q. Cannon, ??To Buy Up the Lamanite Children as Fast as They Could?: Indentured Servitude and Its Legacy in Mormon Society,? Journal of Mormon History 44, no. 2 (Apr. 2018):1-35.

The most recent issue of the Journal of Mormon History has arrived in mailboxes and it is a very strong number. We?ll be highlighting many of the articles over the next few weeks, starting with the Presidential Address of outgoing president, Brian Q. Cannon. His piece, ??To Buy Up the Lamanite Children as Fast as They Could?: Indentured Servitude and Its Legacy in Mormon Society,? examines the white Mormon entanglement with the 19th-century Indian slave trade, a system that emerged in the violence of Spanish colonization of the Great Basin. As Native nations such as the Utes acquired horses, they began raiding non-equestrian tribes and capturing women and children, who were then sold as slaves in New Mexico and California. After the Mormons? arrival in the Great Basin, they found themselves drawn unwillingly into the trade, leading to the purchase of captive children, and in 1852 the Utah Territorial Legislature legalized the trade as an indenture system of unfree labor, albeit one with extensive requirements for the education and good treatment of the indentures.[1]

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Job Ad: Joseph Smith Papers, Full-Time Research Assistant

By March 28, 2018


Thanks to benchmarkbooks.com for the image!

Research Assistant, Joseph Smith Papers (Church History Department)

PURPOSES

The Church History Department announces an opening for a Research Assistant with the Joseph Smith Papers project. The successful candidate will assist the Joseph Smith Papers in the Publications Division of the Church History Department with historical and textual research for volumes in the Papers? Documents series. This is an exciting and unique opportunity for someone interested in pursuing a career in history. We are looking for a motivated, energetic, and skilled individual to join our team.

This is a full-time position expected to last for the duration of the Joseph Smith Papers Project (set to conclude in 2022).

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wvs on Book Review: Harvard S.: “Thanks Matt. The possible filtering through Middlemiss and the material that didn’t make the cut are factors. Nevertheless a vitally important volume. Thanks to Signature…”


Gary Bergera on Book Review: Harvard S.: “J, That's a great question. From my reading of the diaries, I think (but could easily be wrong) that Middlemiss becomes an increasing presence…”


J. Stapley on Book Review: Harvard S.: “Thanks Matt. My biggest questions around this document is the voice of Middlemiss. My hunch is that she is writing in McKay's voice more…”


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