7 comments for “Essential Scholarly Papers

  1. I think Blake’s “Expansion of the Book of Mormon” (or whatever the exact title is) is important, even if most people (including Blake) have qualified it somewhat.

    I’d say the next big one is Andy Ehats oft distributed thesis. I suspect most of us have read it. It’s rather dated now with a lot of the ideas qualified but it is still the best introduction to the subject. Be aware that Ehat doesn’t really want the thesis distributed though. Both because it is dated and because of the topic (second annointings and related topics). The paper was largely borrowed and constituted the later part of _The Mysteries of Godliness_ so you can find a lot of the information there, albeit with a very different tone and twist.

    I forget the title but there was an article from Dialog on the numbers of families practicing polygamy which was very good and important. It is reprinted in _The New Mormon History_.

  2. I’d second the importance of Ostler’s “Book of Mormon: A Modern Expansion of an Ancient Source.” I’m not familiar with Ehat, but then I never did read Buerger’s _Mysteries of Godliness_ either.

    Other essential articles, in my view:

    –Buerger’s “The Adam-God Doctrine,” Dialogue ‘82(?) – Best, most thorough treatment of the subject I’ve read.

    –Bergera’s Dialogue article that inspired _Conflict in the Quorum_. (I already posted about this…)

    –Bush’s “Mormonism’s Negro Doctrine: An Historical Overview,” Dialogue ‘74(?) – an obvious choice. A bit too much detail for some – read Bush’s reprise in Journal of Mormon History, ‘99 for a decent synopsis and update…

    –Jeffries’ “Seers, Savants & Evolution,” Dialogue ‘73(?) – crucial early piece on Mormonism and evolution.

    –Alexander’s “Reconstruction of Mormon Doctrine,” Sunstone ’85(?) – love it or hate it, it’s a must read.

    Maybe I’ll post others later. (Gosh, you’d think all I ever read is Dialogue!)

    Aaron B

  3. I like Aaron’s list. Here are some others to consider:

    Richard Bushman, “Faithful History” The harbringer of the Mormon history debates.

    Blake Ostler, “The Concept of Pre-existence in Mormon Thought” Perhaps the best treatment of the developement of a particular Mormon doctrine (and this one is key to our metaphysics)

    Michael Quinn, “The Council of Fifty: 1844-1930” (or something like that), it does a great job of putting the whole issue of 19th century esoteric political Mormonism in perspective.

    Dallin Oaks, “The Supression of the Nauvoo Expositor” from the Utah L. Rev. because it is the first article to illustrate the potential complexity of Mormon legal history.

    Dale Morgan, “The State of Deseret” It got published as a book by USU, but it began its life as an article in Utah Hist. Quarterly. Great because among other things it collects all of the laws enacted by the State of Deseret.

  4. You know what is sad. I was thinking through all the times I’ve gone up on campus and gone through the issues of Dialog and Sunstone and there really have been few great articles the past 10 years. When I was at BYU, however, it seemed like there were far more in Dialog. I’ve not really gone through the other journals. But it does seem of late that the significant articles have been in books, or more of late on the web. I know that on LDS-Phil over the past 8 years I’ve learned far more than I have from most articles.

  5. I would add Marvin Hill’s dissertation on Primitivism in the early church (don’t remember the title). Jan Shipps’ The Prophet Puzzle (more of an essay?) seem to at least frame the discussion for a time. And I thought Dave Paulsen’s article in BYU Studies on Divine Embodiment was insightful and original.

  6. I would like to send all of you a FREE Dialogue : A Journal of Mormon Thought to help eliminate the misperceptions and fears you may have over our content and offer you a venue to be seen and published by a community of religious scholars. Go to our website and click on Free Issue. Please read our Mission Statement at the bottom of the front page of the website for a better understanding of the forum we provide.

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