Standing Apart: Mormon Historical Consciousness and the Concept of Apostasy

Paperback | April 24, 2014

EditorMiranda Wilcox, John D. Young

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Latter-day Saints have a paradoxical relationship to the past; even as they invest their own history with sacred meaning, celebrating the restoration of ancient truths and the fulfillment of biblical prophecies, they repudiate the eighteen centuries of Christianity preceding the founding oftheir church as apostate distortions of the truth. Since the early days of Mormonism, Latter-day Saints (LDS) have used the paradigm of apostasy and restoration in their narratives about the origin of their church. This has generated a powerful and enduring binary of categorization that hasprofoundly impacted Mormon self-perception and relations with others. Standing Apart explores how the idea of apostasy has functioned as a category to mark, define, and set apart "the other" in Mormon historical consciousness and in the construction of Mormon narrative identity. The volume's fifteen contributors trace the development of LDS narratives of apostasywithin the context of both Mormon history and American Protestant historiography. They suggest ways in which these narratives might be reformulated to engage with the past, as well as offering new models for interfaith relations. This volume provides a novel approach for understanding and resolvingsome of the challenges the LDS church faces in the twenty-first century.

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Latter-day Saints have a paradoxical relationship to the past; even as they invest their own history with sacred meaning, celebrating the restoration of ancient truths and the fulfillment of biblical prophecies, they repudiate the eighteen centuries of Christianity preceding the founding oftheir church as apostate distortions of the tr...

Miranda Wilcox is Assistant Professor of English at Brigham Young University. She researches Anglo-Saxon religious culture and holds an MMS and Ph.D. in medieval studies from the University of Notre Dame. John D. Young is Assistant Professor of History at Flagler College. His research interests lie in the religious history of the high...
Format:PaperbackDimensions:368 pages, 9.25 × 6.12 × 0.68 inPublished:April 24, 2014Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0199348146

ISBN - 13:9780199348145

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Table of Contents

AcknowledgementsContributorsAbbreviations and Notes on SourcesMiranda Wilcox and John D. Young: IntroductionPART I: CONTEXTUALIZING THE LDS GREAT APOSTASY NARRATIVE1. Eric R. Dursteler: Historical Periodization in the LDS Great Apostasy Narrative2. Christopher C. Jones and Stephen J. Fleming: "Except among that Portion of Mankind": Early Mormon Conceptions of the Apostasy3. Matthew Bowman: James Talmage, B.H. Roberts, and Confessional History in a Secular Age4. Miranda Wilcox: Narrating Apostasy and the LDS Quest for IdentityPART II: RE-NARRATING THE APOSTASY: NEW APPROACHES5. Cory D. Crawford: Competing Histories in the Hebrew Bible and in the Latter-day Saint Tradition6. Matthew J. Grey: Latter-day Saint Perceptions of Jewish Apostasy at the Time of Jesus7. Taylor G. Petrey: Purity and Parallels: Constructing the Apostasy Narrative of Early Christianity8. Lincoln H. Blumell: Rereading the Council of Nicaea and its Creed9. Ariel Bybee Laughton: Apostasy's Ancestors: Anti-Arian and Anti-Mormon Discourse in the Struggle for Christianity10. Spencer E. Young: "Complexity and Richness": Re-envisioning the Middle Ages for Mormon Historical Narratives11. Jonathan Green: King Ratbod's Dilemma: Apostasy and Restoration in the Sixteenth and Twenty-First Centuries12. David D. Peck: Covenantal Pluralism in the Qur'an: Alternatives to the Binary Logic of Apostasy13. John D. Young: Long Narratives: Towards a New Mormon Understanding of ApostasyTerry Givens: Epilogue: "We have only the Old Thing": Rethinking Mormon RestorationAppendix: First Presidency Statement on God's Love for All MankindIndex