It’s been a few weeks since we blogged about LDS Perspectives podcasts, which have been great. Below are the episodes you may have missed if you haven’t subscribed directly to the LDS Perspectives feed. As always, feel free to comment on anything that strikes you about these episodes.
December 6, 2017: An Introduction to Higher Biblical Criticism with Philip Barlow
Russell Stevenson talks with Dr. Philip L. Barlow about factors in the nineteenth century that changed how scholars interpreted the Bible, including the introduction of historical criticism.
Dr. Barlow is the Arrington Chair of Mormon History and Culture at Utah State University. He earned his PhD from Harvard University. Dr. Barlow’s books include The Oxford Handbook to Mormonism (co-edited with Terryl Givens) and Mormons and the Bible: The Place of Latter-day Saints in American Religion. He is also the author of “Adam and Eve in the Twenty-First Century: Navigating Conflicting Commandments in DLS Faith and Biblical Scholarship,” which appeared in the most recent issue of Studies in the Bible and Antiquity.
November 28, 2017: Richard Turley on the Aftermath of the Mountain Meadows Massacre
Laura Harris Hales and Richard E. Turley talk about the aftermath of the Mountain Meadows Massacre.
Turley has written extensively on the Mountain Meadows Massacre including Massacre at Mountain Meadows with Glen Leonard and Ronald Walker and the recently released Mountain Meadows Massacre: Collected Legal Papers with co-editors Janiece Johnson and LaJean Carruth.
November 22, 2017: Paul Reeve on the Mormon Search for Religious Liberty
Laura Harris Hales talks with Professor W. Paul Reeve about the early Mormon struggle for religious freedom in Nauvoo, territorial Utah, and the efforts by modern-day Mormons to prevent history from repeating itself in regards to religious discrimination in the United States.
Professor Reeve is director of graduate studies in history at the University of Utah and director of the newly organized Mormon Studies program. He is author of Religion of a Different Color: Race and the Mormon Struggle for Whiteness.
Reeve’s writings are included in The Council of Fifty: What the Records Reveal about Mormon History, a collection of scholarly reactions to the release of the Council of Fifty minutes.
November 15, 2017: Elizabeth Kuehn on The Kirtland Safety Society
Russell Stevenson interviews Elizabeth Kuehn, a Joseph Smith Papers historian and documentary editor, about the failure of the Kirtland Safety Society Bank.
Unlike the banks we are familiar with, the Kirtland Safety Society was not a deposit bank. Rather, it was funded by shareholders who were to slowly pay for their stock, thereby providing the funding for the bank. The establishment and failure of the Kirtland Safety Society is a complicated story involving specie, 1830s finance laws, bank vetoes, and practices foreign to modern financial practices. Kuehn deftly walks listeners through the ins and outs of how the bank is established, its short life and demise, and the fallout.
To read more from the Joseph Smith Papers on the topic, check out Documents, Volume 5: October 1835-January 1838.
November 8, 2017: Terryl Givens on the Becoming Like God Gospel Topics essay
Terryl Givens discusses the somewhat controversial “Becoming Like God” Gospel Topic essay, and how some Mormons are confused about what becoming like God actually means.
Terryl Givens teaches courses in nineteenth-century studies and religious themes in literature at the University of Richmond, where he is Professor of Literature and Religion and the Jabez A. Bostwick Professor of English. Dr. Givens has been a Research Fellow at both Brigham Young University and the University of Oxford.
The New York Times called Givens’s work “provocative reading.” His books include By the Hand of Mormon, When Souls had Wings, People of Paradox, and a two-volume history of Mormon thought: Wresting the Angel and Feeding the Flock. With his wife Fiona, he has written The God Who Weeps, The Crucible of Doubt, and most recently, The Christ Who Heals.
November 1, 2017: Fiona Givens on the Christ who heals
Fiona Givens is an independent scholar who, together with husband, Terryl, is the author of The God Who Weeps: How Mormonism Makes Sense of Life and The Crucible of Doubt.
In this extended episode, Fiona Givens discusses one of the most important concepts restored by Joseph Smith — a Christ who heals our woundedness.
October 25, 2017 Julie M. Smith on Mark’s Human Portrait of Jesus
Laura Harris Hales talks with Julie Smith, who points out some of Mark’s hidden gems that may be overlooked by the casual reader. To Smith, Mark is the stake president in California who lets a homeless family sleep in the cultural hall because he’s not much of a rule-follower kind of a guy; whereas Matthew and Luke work for CES in Salt Lake and wear a suit and would never dream of breaking a rule. Mark’s Jesus is very earthy and very human.
Julie M. Smith has an MA in Biblical Studies from the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley. She is on the executive board of the Mormon Theology Seminar and blogs for Times & Seasons.
October 18, 2017: Church History Library and Reconstructing History
Russell Stevenson talks with Keith Erekson about preserving the artifacts of, reconstructing, and interpreting history. Erekson is the current director of the LDS Church History Library.
“We always like to say,” declares Erekson, “‘Well, history’s 20/20. It’s hindsight.’ No, it’s not. We’re just here in 2017, and we’re doing our best.” He urges us to break the mindset that we know it all and just say, “I’m looking for the best I can find, and tomorrow I’ll find a little more — and next year I’ll find a little more,” then we don’t get discouraged when something changes because that’s the way it works: it’s always changing. We’re always learning.
October 16, 2017: The Women of the Old Testament
Stephanie Sorensen interviews Heather Farrell about lesser known women in the Old Testament.
Heather began writing about women in the scriptures shortly after the birth of her first child on her popular blog Women in the Scriptures. She is a self-taught biblical scholar and the author of two books about women in the scriptures including Walking with Women in the Old Testament, which is currently available for preorder.
Photos are courtesy of LDS Perspectives or the sources noted on the respective LDS Perspectives webpages.