Articles by

J Stuart

Q&A with Sara Georgini

By March 19, 2019


Kurt Manwaring has published an interview with historian Sara Georgini over on his site, From the Desk. Georgini earned her Ph.D. in American History at Boston University and is a Series Editor for The Papers of John Adams at the Massachusetts Historical Society. Her most recent book, Household Gods: The Religious Lives of the Adams Family, examines the religious lives of the Adams Family across several generations. An excerpt from Manwaring’s site (including a question about the Adams Family and Joseph Smith is posted below; click over to From the Desk to read the rest!

How was religion used to frame the successes and failures of John Adams’ political endeavors?

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Call for Applicants: Mormon Studies Publication Workshop

By March 18, 2019


On Thursday, June 6, 2019 the Fourth Annual Mormon Studies Publication Workshop will be held at the University of Utah.

The workshop helped to create a sense of community among young scholars from a variety of places and disciplines while providing helpful feedback for developing projects. Over the past three years, we have received dozens of excellent submissions on race, gender, sexuality, and other historiographical fields. Last year, at Boise State University, we hosted scholars from across the United States California to Massachussetts. You can read more about the 2017 meeting at the John C. Danforth Center on Religion and Politics at Washington University in St. Louis here.

Workshopped papers from the past three years have become parts of books published by (or under contract with) Oxford University Press, University of Nebraska Press, and Routledge University Press; the Journal of Religion, the Journal of Mormon History, Church History: Studies in Christianity and Culture, completed dissertations, and other distinguished venues.

The workshop, “Writing: Strategies on How and When to Write,” will be held Thursday, June 6 from 10:00 AM AM-3:30 PM. There will be no cost for the workshop beyond punctual arrival and rigorous intellectual engagement.

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New Articles on Mormon History and Mormon Studies

By March 12, 2019


Several articles on Mormon history or Mormon Studies have been published in non-Mormon specific venues in the past few months. While the Journal of Mormon History, Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought, Sunstone, and BYU Studies continue to be sources of groundbreaking and award-winning scholarship, they are not the only journals interested in the academic study of Mormonism.

I’ve included the abstract and link to each article. Let me know if I missed any from the past few months in the comments!

audio, megaphone, sound, speaker, voice, volume icon

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Applications Now Open for MWHIT Research Grants

By March 10, 2019


From our friends at the Mormon Women’s History Initiative Team:

We are beyond thrilled to be able to offer two research grants to support work in Mormon women’s history–one student award and one independent scholar award. Deadline to apply is April 1, so don’t delay. Click here for details on the Student Grant and here for details on the Independent Scholar grant.


CFP: Interdisciplinary Symposium on “Voting Rights: 1870, 1920, 1965, 2020”

By March 8, 2019


I imagine there would be some great Mormon connections, such as fresh examinations of the Edmunds and Edmunds-Tucker Act, that our community could make for this conference.

College of Humanities and Social Sciences, Utah State University (Logan, UT)

March 19-20, 2020

In 1920, the Nineteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution was ratified, granting many women in the nation the right to vote for the first time. Fifty years earlier, Utah had been among the first territories to enfranchise women in 1870, and Utah then allowed women’s suffrage again in 1895 after statehood. Despite these advances, the history of enfranchisement still excluded key groups, even after the Voting Rights Act of 1965.

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2019 Mormon Studies Conference at UVU

By March 5, 2019



How “Mormon” were the Events in ABDUCTED IN PLAIN SIGHT?

By March 4, 2019


The film “Abducted in Plain Sight” has gained a lot of notoriety online for its salacious story. Here is the plot, per Rotten Tomatoes: ”
On October 17, 1974, 12 year old Jan Broberg was kidnapped by her next-door neighbor and parents’ best friend. Abducted In Plain Sight is a feature length documentary about the stranger-than-fiction, true story of the Brobergs; an Idaho family who fell under the spell of a sociopathic neighbor with designs on their twelve-year-old daughter. The film tells the story of one family’s struggle with desire, deceit, faith and forgiveness. The Brobergs’ troubling admissions reveal epic failures and untold personal dramas that point to the biggest tragedy of all — that these crimes could have been prevented. “

J Stuart and Cristina Rosetti (PhD Candidate in Religious Studies at UC-Riverside whose research focuses on non-LDS Mormonism) decided to discuss whether or not “Mormonism” contributed to the strange tale. The documentary should have several trigger warnings for sexual assault and rape. Consider this a trigger warning for the post and for the documentary itself. Also, this post contains spoilers.

Image result for abducted in plain sight

JS: I’ve seen some online discussion about whether the strange case of the Jan Broberg abductions should be considered particular symptoms of Mormonism or Mormon culture. I’m inclined to say NO, but I do think that it sheds light on how Mormonism functions in different social contexts. What do you think?

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“Everyone thinks I’m a kook and a charlatan”: Tom Brady, Alex Guerrero and the Mormon Faith in Alternative Medicine

By February 25, 2019


Today’s post comes from Craig Yugawa. Craig is an MD candidate at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. His current research focuses on healthcare access, physician advocacy, and sports medicine. He holds a BA in American Studies from Brigham Young University, where his studies focused on the cultural impact of sports and religion. You can follow him on twitter at @BYU_craiggers.

This weekend I happened upon a post on LDS Living that led to post a few animated tweets. The article is innocuous enough, pointing out Tom Brady commenting “Love my Mormons” on a recent his current teammate and BYU football alum Kyle Van Noy Instagram post. Highlighting Brady’s prior Mormon-adjacent post in 2017 that “our bodies are temples,” Danielle Wagner, the author of the post, speculates that this phrasing may, in fact, come from the influence of Alex Guerrero, codeveloper of the “TB12 Method”  and member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.[i]

Image result for alex guerrero

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CFP: Mormon Studies at the AAR

By January 28, 2019


If you’d like to apply for AAR, use their PAPERS system. You can learn more here.

Mormon Studies Unit [ORIGINAL CALL]


Statement of Purpose:  This Unit will examine the range of topics, disciplines, and methodologies that can be brought into dialogue with Mormonism as studied in an academic environment. It is interested in exploring strategies for teaching about Mormonism, both as the main focus of a class or as a unit within a survey course. It seeks to identify the best resources available for teaching and understanding the tradition and provide encouragement for scholars to fill gaps in what is currently available. The Unit encourages significant comparative studies and interdisciplinary cross-fertilization and hopes to explore intersections between Mormonism and ethics, theology, philosophy, ecclesiology, missiology, spirituality, arts and literature, sociology, scripture, and liberation studies.

The Mormon Studies Unit seeks proposals for full sessions or individual papers that consider any aspect of Mormon experience using the methods of critical theory, philosophy, theology, history, sociology, or psychology. This includes the use of Mormonism as a case study for informing larger questions in any of these disciplines and, thus, only indirectly related to the Mormon experience.

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CFP: Book of Mormon Studies Association Conference

By January 20, 2019


From our friends at the Book of Mormon Studies Association Conference:

The Third Annual Meeting of
The Book of Mormon Studies Association
October 11-12, 2019
Utah State University

The Book of Mormon Studies Association (BoMSA) is pleased to announce its third annual meeting, to be held October 11–12, 2019, at Utah State University. The event is sponsored by USU’s Department of Religious Studies and with thanks to both Philip Barlow and Patrick Mason, successive occupiers of the Leonard J. Arrington Chair of Mormon History and Culture.

This annual event gathers a variety of scholars invested in serious academic study of the Book of Mormon. It has no particular theme but instead invites papers on any subject related to the Book of Mormon from any viable academic angle. This year’s two keynote speakers will be Paul Gutjahr (Indiana University) and Amy Easton-Flake (Brigham Young University). We will also hold a special book interview session with Community of Christ scholar Dale E. Luffman.

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Recent Comments

J Stuart on 2020 Mormon History Association: “Good point, Quincy! There's no reason to send in an all-male panel. There is plenty of time to network with women.”


Hannah on DH and the Woman's: “Thanks for this great post and run-down of topic modeling. Cheers Jeff!”


Alan Clark on 2020 Mormon History Association: “Hey Ben, I have a topic that might go well with yours. Let's talk. newwavealan@hotmail.com”


Ben S on 2020 Mormon History Association: “I’m going to be submitting something related to the Modernist/Fundamentalist controversy (early 20th century), probably centered around either Joseph Fielding Smith/hermeneutics or the LDS Church…”


Quincy D. Newell on 2020 Mormon History Association: “SLC 2019 was great, and I'm looking forward to Rochester 2020! Let's see if we can make 2020 the YEAR WITHOUT A MANEL--thanks for…”


J Stuart on Hark Lay Wales Grave: “This seems like an intentional misreading. Your offense at my raising concerns about the language used to discuss the lives and labor of enslaved people…”

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