Blogging about Robert Orsi at Juvenile Instructor

The Juvenile Instructor has been running a series on Robert Orsi’s newest book, History and Presence. I was privileged to contribute the third entry. You can read it here. And below is an excerpt.  One final thought from the chapter. Robert Orsi concludes this topic by addressing the scholarly (and modern) anxiety to find a purpose…

Barack Obama, Eddie Glaude, and the Black Prophetic Tradition

I’ve always been an apologist for Barack Obama since reading Audacity of Hope shortly after it was published in 2006. I think he’s the most careful and sophisticated interpreter of and proponent for deliberate democracy to be elected president in over a century. I was therefore really excited to receive the first substantive edition of…

Mormons and the Trump Administration: Some Recent Essays

Since this blog is a scrapbook of sorts for my writings elsewhere, I figured I should register a couple recent essays that I wrote related to the LDS Church’s relationship to the Trump administration.  The first essay, “The Mormon Tabernacle Choir Will Usher In the Trump Era,” puts the inauguration in context of Mormonism’s peripheral…

How Studying Evangelicalism Prepared Me for Trump’s Alternative Facts

Trump’s first few days in office have been, well, newsworthy. And by that I mean he’s spent much of his time fighting with the news. The morning after his inauguration, he declared war on those who dared claim his crowd was smaller than that of Obama’s. After visual evidence clearly demonstrated the curtailed audience for his speech—a fact…

REVIEW: Mary Campbell, Charles Ellis Johnson and the Erotic Mormon Image

The Mormon History Association community is small enough that you typically know what books are forthcoming and when. It is very rare, then, that a book captures us by surprise. However, when Mary Campbell’s Charles Ellis Johnson and the Erotic Mormon Image (Chicago UP, 2016) showed up on Amazon last year, some were puzzled. The author…

Martin Luther King Jr.’s Social Justice Vision

There are few better things to do on Martin Luther King Jr. Day than to look over his famous and influential works. Everyone knows his “I Have a Dream Speech,” which is of course powerful, but there is so much more to be plumbed. For those especially interested in his sermons, you can download many…

Laurel Ulrich Week in Utah

If you are in Utah and interested in Mormon history, there are several events this week you’ll want to note. Laurel Ulrich’s newest book, A Household of Females (Knopf), was officially released last week at AHA. (I highlighted it here.) She is now on her release tour in Deseret, and you won’t want to miss it….

My Papers for #AHA17 and #ASCH17

Yesterday was a beautiful 71 degrees here in Conroe, but I’m packing my warm clothes because tomorrow I’m headed out to Denver, which is apparently pretty cold right now. (However, it gives me the chance to wear my full-length wool coat that I bought last winter and have only worn once.) There are plenty of gripes about AHA…

BOOK NOTICE: Laurel Ulrich: A House Full of Females

At AHA this weekend, Knopf is launching Laurel Ulrich’s newest book, A House Full of Females: Plural Marriage and Women’s Rights in Early Mormonism, 1835-1870. I imagine bookstores and Amazon will start selling copies shortly afterward. Anybody familiar with early American history knows and respects Ulrich’s work. Her A Midwife’s Tale: The Life of Martha Ballard, Based…

What I Wrote Online, 2016

This is an index for what I wrote online this year, mostly for my own future reference. This does not include my writing for print publications. (Those are on my CV.) Most of these appeared on my blog. If they appeared somewhere else, I include the site’s name in parentheses. Featured Essays for Online Magazines Ammon…