MHA Conference-Housekeeping Items/Things To Look For

By May 19, 2009

Well, this week the Mormon History Association Conference will be in full swing at Springfield, Illinois. The preliminary program is here.

Panel Changes:

There has been at least one change to the schedule that you should be made aware of. The panel I’m a part of with Paul Reeve and Stan Thayne has moved to 2B, Friday 2:00 to 3:30 pm. It had been on Saturday.  Presumably (we haven’t gotten any definite word), our panel switched with Chris, Ed and Mark Brown’s panel, which would place them in our old spot of 6A.  So, be tuned to that and come out to see us!

The MHA folk and my panel mates were very kind in making the change as I need to fly out midday Saturday.

JI bloggers presenting are:

Stephen C. Taysom, ?The Body Evil and the Body Celestial: Nineteenth-Century Shaker and Mormon Theologies of Embodiment and Sacred Foodways?

Christopher C. Jones, ?The Un-gathered: The Religious Lives of Mormons in the American South, 1875-1910?

Ed Jeter, ?Mormon Missionaries in Southwest Texas, 1898-1915?

Jordan Watkins, ?The Great God, The ?OverSoul,? and Pluralistic Pantheism: Orson Pratt?s Intelligent-Matter Theory and the Gods of Emerson and James?

Ben Park, ?Rational Supernaturalism: Early Mormonism and Enlightened-Romantic Rhetoric?

Stan Thayne, ?Gathering the Scattered Children of Lehi: Constructions of Whiteness and Israelite Lineage in the Pacific Islands Missions?

Jared T.amez, ?Believing Blood in the Borderlands: Early Mormon and Protestant Missionary Efforts on the U.S.-Mexico Border?

Matt Bowman, ?An Approach to Mormon Worship, 1830-2008?


Article filed under Miscellaneous


  1. There should be some sort of a prize for having so many bloggers presenting at a single conference. Congratulations, guys!

    Comment by Ardis Parshall — May 19, 2009 @ 6:23 pm

  2. Thanks, Ardis. Though I think when you present, your blog would have us beat for percentage of bloggers participating. 🙂

    Comment by Jared T — May 19, 2009 @ 6:27 pm

  3. True dat.

    Comment by Ardis Parshall — May 19, 2009 @ 6:39 pm

  4. Wish I could be there to cheer on the JI team. Historians have all the fun. 🙂

    Comment by Elizabeth — May 20, 2009 @ 12:03 am

  5. For the record… The preliminary program has the title of my presentation slightly wrong: it should be ?Mormon Missionaries in South*EAST* Texas, 1898-1915.”

    Comment by Edje — May 20, 2009 @ 8:45 am

  6. I really enjoy this blog and will be at the conference. I look forward to hearing some of you present.

    Comment by Natalie Rose — May 20, 2009 @ 9:24 am

  7. I’ve been in Nauvoo all day, and it’s been fun to just happen upon a dozen or so mormon historians, all of whom had the same idea of going through Nauvoo on the way to Springfield.

    Comment by Ben — May 20, 2009 @ 9:23 pm

  8. Will they be blogging/tweeting the proceedings as well as presenting?

    Comment by Guy Murray — May 21, 2009 @ 10:10 pm

  9. Guy, we are going to take notes in our respective sessions and put them together at the end of the day into a post. Thanks for asking.

    Comment by Jared T. — May 22, 2009 @ 1:41 am

  10. Thanks Jared. Looking forward to them.

    Comment by Guy Murray — May 22, 2009 @ 4:42 pm

  11. It was fantastic seeing so many JI faces at this year’s conference.

    I was able to participate in the session where Jared and Stan presented. (I read my friend Newell Bringhurst’s comments since he couldn’t be present.) I was teasing Jared and Stan that Newell was going to be harsh, but actually both papers were captivating and Newell’s comments were primarily laudatory and constructive. For decades Newell has been reminding us to consider the critical issues of race, gender, and ethnicity in Mormon studies. Jared, Ed (and fellow session presenter Paul Reeves) are right on target, plowing new ground.

    BTW: Jan Shipps later reminded me of the story of the first time Newell ever presented at an MHA — way back in the 70s. His topic was also related to race and his fellow presenter that session was Bill Russell. The commenter, Marvin Hill, wasn’t able to be present, so Jan read his responses, which were reportedly strong (to put it mildly). Jan had told everyone beforehand that she guessed they would have to think of her as “Marvin Hill in drag” — so I guess you guys could have thought of me as Newell Bringhurst in a wig.

    I also got to sit in on Christopher, Ed, and Mark Brown’s session on the development of the LDS Church in the Southeastern US in the late 19th/early 20th century. In a great conference, that was probably my favorite session. I think the branches and the missionfield comprise the “great untold story” of Mormonism — the periphery is routinely ignored in our normally obsessive focus on the church’s core elite. Among other things, I loved Christopher’s phrase “ungathered Saints” and his comparison/contrast of church structure and practices between the core and periphery and I loved Ed’s model for considering the relationship between the missionfield and headquarters.

    I wish I’d been able to attend the rest of your sessions — the only reason I missed any was because it was impossible to attend all due to the many concurrent offerings.

    Great work!

    Comment by John Hamer — May 23, 2009 @ 11:13 pm

  12. John, thanks for your kind words. It was very good to meet you as well and I appreciate very much the wonderful hospitality shown me by the BCC crowd in Old Nauvoo. Thanks, guys and gals!

    I’m in South Texas now doing some oral histories with some of the pioneering saints out here. I hope to have more to report as I get it all straightened out. And to my fellow blog mates, I still have some notes that are on my computer. I’m very much stuck in the stone age out here 🙂 I hope tomorrow to post the remaining notes from the conference and notes I took on Saturday morning.

    Comment by Jared T. — May 27, 2009 @ 1:52 pm


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