[Introduction to] Writing Centers at the Center of Change
Joe Essid and Brian McTague
Writing Centers at the Center of Change looks at how eleven centers, internationally, adapted to change at their institutions, during a decade when their very success has become a valued commodity in a larger struggle for resources on many campuses.
Bringing together both US and international perspectives, this volume offers solutions for adapting to change in the world of writing centers, ranging from the logistical to the pedagogical, and even to the existential. Each author discusses the origins, appropriate responses, and partners to seek when change comes from within a school or outside it. Chapters document new programs being formed under changing circumstances, and suggest ways to navigate professional or pedagogical changes that may undermine the hard work of more than four decades of writing-center professionals.
The book’s audience includes writing center and learning-commons administrators, university librarians, deans, department chairs affiliated with writing centers. It will also be useful for graduate students in composition, rhetoric, and academic writing.
[Introduction to] Constructing the Adolescent Reader in Contemporary Young Adult Fiction
Elisabeth Rose Gruner
This book examines the way young adult readers are constructed in a variety of contemporary young adult fictions, arguing that contemporary young adult novels depict readers as agents. Reading, these novels suggest, is neither an unalloyed good nor a dangerous ploy, but rather an essential, occasionally fraught, by turns escapist and instrumental, deeply pleasurable, and highly contentious activity that has value far beyond the classroom skills or the specific content it conveys. After an introductory chapter that examines the state of reading and young adult fiction today, the book examines novels that depict reading in school, gendered and racialized reading, reading magical and religious books, and reading as a means to developing civic agency. These examinations reveal that books for teens depict teen readers as doers, and suggest that their ability to read deeply, critically, and communally is crucial to the development of adolescent agency.
[Chapter 1 from] Viral Modernism: The Influenza Pandemic and Interwar Literature
The influenza pandemic of 1918–1919 took the lives of between 50 and 100 million people worldwide, and the United States suffered more casualties than in all the wars of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries combined. Yet despite these catastrophic death tolls, the pandemic faded from historical and cultural memory in the United States and throughout Europe, overshadowed by World War One and the turmoil of the interwar period. In Viral Modernism, Elizabeth Outka reveals the literary and cultural impact of one of the deadliest plagues in history, bringing to light how it shaped canonical works of fiction and poetry.
Outka shows how and why the contours of modernism shift when we account for the pandemic’s hidden but widespread presence. She investigates the miasmic manifestations of the pandemic and its spectral dead in interwar Anglo-American literature, uncovering the traces of an outbreak that brought a nonhuman, invisible horror into every community. Viral Modernism examines how literature and culture represented the virus’s deathly fecundity, as writers wrestled with the scope of mass death in the domestic sphere amid fears of wider social collapse. Outka analyzes overt treatments of the pandemic by authors like Katherine Anne Porter and Thomas Wolfe and its subtle presence in works by Virginia Woolf, T. S. Eliot, and W. B. Yeats. She uncovers links to the disease in popular culture, from early zombie resurrection to the resurgence of spiritualism. Viral Modernism brings the pandemic to the center of the era, revealing a vast tragedy that has hidden in plain sight.
[Introduction to] Animate Literacies: Literature, Affect, and the Politics of Humanism
In Animate Literacies Nathan Snaza proposes a new theory of literature and literacy in which he outlines how literacy is both constitutive of the social and used as a means to define the human. Weaving new materialism with feminist, queer, and decolonial thought, Snaza theorizes literacy as a contact zone in which humans, nonhuman animals, and nonvital objects such as chairs and paper all become active participants. In readings of classic literature by Kate Chopin, Frederick Douglass, James Joyce, Toni Morrison, Mary Shelley, and others, Snaza emphasizes the key roles that affect and sensory experiences play in literacy. Snaza upends common conceptions of literacy and its relation to print media, showing instead how such understandings reinforce dehumanizations linked to dominant imperialist, heterosexist, and capitalist definitions of the human. The path toward disrupting such exclusionary, humanist frameworks, Snaza contends, lies in formulating alternative practices of literacy and literary study that escape disciplined knowledge production.
[Introduction to] I and You
J. David Stevens
The four stories in J. David Stevens’s I and You focus on immigrants and their families, characters trying to find the merge point between the China of a previous generation and America today. A teenage son puzzles over his father’s obsession with American football. A Texas lesbian falls for an international graduate student. A divorced middle-aged woman tries to right an old wrong in the life of a man for whom she serves as caregiver. Through episodes where intimacy falters in the face of palpable distance, characters must confront unknowable details in the lives of even those closest to them: parents, lovers, confidantes. These are ghost stories of a kind, tales of what was lost and what was let go during the cultural journey from East to West.
[Chapter 1 from] No Archive Will Restore You
At once memoir, theory, poetic prose, and fragment, No Archive Will Restore You is a feverish meditation on the body. Departing from Antonio Gramsci’s summons to compile an inventory of the historical traces left in each of us, Singh engages with both the impossibility and urgent necessity of crafting an archive of the body. Through reveries on the enduring legacies of pain, desire, sexuality, race, and identity, she asks us to sense and feel what we have been trained to disavow, to re-member the body as more than itself.
[Introduction to] Unthinking Mastery: Dehumanism and Colonial Entanglements
In Unthinking Mastery Julietta Singh challenges a core, fraught dimension of geopolitical, cultural, and scholarly endeavor: the drive toward mastery over the self and others. Drawing on postcolonial theory, queer theory, new materialism, and animal studies, Singh traces how pervasive the concept of mastery has been to modern politics and anticolonial movements. She juxtaposes destructive uses of mastery, such as the colonial domination of bodies, against more laudable forms, such as intellectual and linguistic mastery, to underscore how the concept—regardless of its use—is rooted in histories of violence and the wielding of power. For anticolonial thinkers like Fanon and Gandhi, forms of bodily mastery were considered to be the key to a decolonial future. Yet as Singh demonstrates, their advocacy for mastery unintentionally reinforced colonial logics. In readings of postcolonial literature by J. M. Coetzee, Mahasweta Devi, Indra Sinha, and Jamaica Kincaid, Singh suggests that only by moving beyond the compulsive desire to become masterful human subjects can we disentangle ourselves from the legacies of violence and fantasies of invulnerability that lead us to hurt other humans, animals, and the environment.
[Introduction to] Feeding the Flock: The Foundations of Mormon Thought: Church and Praxis
Terryl L. Givens
Feeding the Flock, the second volume of Terryl L. Givens's landmark study of the foundations of Mormon thought and practice, traces the essential contours of Mormon practice as it developed from Joseph Smith to the present. Despite the stigmatizing fascination with its social innovations (polygamy, communalism), its stark supernaturalism (angels, gold plates, and seer stones), and its most esoteric aspects (a New World Garden of Eden, sacred undergarments), as well as its long-standing outlier status among American Protestants, Givens reminds us that Mormonism remains the most enduring-and thriving-product of the nineteenth-century's religious upheavals and innovations. Because Mormonism is founded on a radically unconventional cosmology, based on unusual doctrines of human nature, deity, and soteriology, a history of its development cannot use conventional theological categories. Givens has structured these volumes in a way that recognizes the implicit logic of Mormon thought. The first book, Wrestling the Angel, centered on the theoretical foundations of Mormon thought and doctrine regarding God, humans, and salvation. Feeding the Flock considers Mormon practice, the authority of the institution of the church and its priesthood, forms of worship, and the function and nature of spiritual gifts in the church's history, revealing that Mormonism is still a tradition very much in the process of formation.
At once original and provocative, engaging and learned, Givens offers the most sustained account of Mormon thought and practice yet written.
[Introduction to] In Search of Annie Drew: Jamaica Kincaid's Mother and Muse
Daryl Cumber Dance
There is perhaps no other person who has been so often and obsessively featured in any writer’s canon as Jamaica Kincaid’s mother, Annie Drew. In this provocative new book, Daryl Dance argues that everything Kincaid has written, regardless of its apparent theme, actually relates to Kincaid’s efforts to free herself from her mother, whether her subject is ostensibly other family members, her home nation, a precolonial world, or even Kincaid herself. A devoted reader of Kincaid’s work, Dance had long been aware of the author’s love-hate relationship with her mother, but it was not until reading the 2008 essay "The Estrangement" that Dance began to ponder who this woman named Annie Victoria Richardson Drew really was. Dance decided to seek the answers herself, embarking on a years-long journey to unearth the real Annie Drew.
Through interviews and extensive research, Dance has pieced together a fuller, more contextualized picture in an attempt to tell Annie Drew’s story. Previous analyses of Kincaid’s relationship with her mother have not gone beyond the writer’s own carefully orchestrated and sometimes contrived portraits of her. In Search of Annie Drew offers an alternate reading of Kincaid’s work that expands our understanding of the object of such passionate love and such ferocious hatred, an ordinary woman who became an unforgettable literary figure through her talented daughter’s renderings.
[Introduction to] Pedagogical Matters: New Materialisms and Curriculum Studies
Nathan Snaza, Debbie Sonu, Sarah E. Truman, and Zofia Zaliwska
This edited collection takes up the wild and sudden surge of new materialisms in the field of curriculum studies. New materialisms shift away from the strong focus on discourse associated with the linguistic or cultural turn in theory and toward recent work in the physical and biological sciences; in doing so, they posit ontologies of becoming that re-configure our sense of what a human person is and how that person relates to the more-than-human ecologies in which it is nested. Ignited by an urgency to disrupt the dangers of anthropocentrism and systems of domination in the work of curriculum and pedagogy, this book builds upon the axiom that agency is not a uniquely human capacity but something inherent in all matter. This collection blurs the boundaries of human and non-human, animate and inanimate, to focus on webs of interrelations. Each chapter explores these questions while attending to the ethical, aesthetic, and political tasks of education—both in and out of school contexts. It is essential reading for anyone interested in feminist, queer, anti-racist, ecological, and posthumanist theories and practices of education.
[Introduction to] Twisted: My Dreadlock Chronicles
Bertram D. Ashe
In Twisted: My Dreadlock Chronicles, professor Bert Ashe delivers a witty, fascinating, and unprecedented account of black male identity as seen through our culture's perceptions of hair. It is a deeply personal story that weaves together the cultural and political history of dreadlocks with Ashe's own mid-life journey to lock his hair.
After leading a far-too-conventional life for forty years, Ashe began a long, arduous, uncertain process of locking his own hair in an attempt to step out of American convention. Black hair, after all, matters. Few Americans are subject to snap judgements like those in the African-American community, and fewer communities face such loaded criticism about their appearances, in particular their hair. Twisted: My Dreadlock Chronicles makes the argument that the story of dreadlocks in America can't be told except in front of the backdrop of black hair in America.
Ask most Americans about dreadlocks and they immediately conjure a picture of Bob Marley: on stage, mid-song, dreads splayed. When most Americans see dreadlocks, a range of assumptions quickly follow: he's Jamaican, he's Rasta, he plays reggae; he stinks, he smokes, he deals; he's bohemian, he's creative, he's counter-cultural. Few styles in America have more symbolism and generate more conflicting views than dreadlocks. To "read" dreadlocks is to take the cultural pulse of America. To read Twisted: My Dreadlock Chronicles is to understand a larger story about the truths and biases present in how we perceive ourselves and others. Ashe's riveting and intimate work, a genuine first of its kind, will be a seminal work for years to come.
[Introduction to] Apocalyptic Sentimentalism: Love and Fear in U.S. Antebellum Literature
In contrast to the prevailing scholarly consensus that understands sentimentality to be grounded on a logic of love and sympathy, Apocalyptic Sentimentalism demonstrates that in order for sentimentality to work as an antislavery engine, it needed to be linked to its seeming opposite—fear, especially the fear of God’s wrath. Most antislavery reformers recognized that calls for love and sympathy or the representation of suffering slaves would not lead an audience to “feel right” or to actively oppose slavery. The threat of God’s apocalyptic vengeance—and the terror that this threat inspired—functioned within the tradition of abolitionist sentimentality as a necessary goad for sympathy and love. Fear, then, was at the center of nineteenth-century sentimental strategies for inciting antislavery reform, bolstering love when love faltered, and operating as a powerful mechanism for establishing interracial sympathy. Depictions of God’s apocalyptic vengeance constituted the most efficient strategy for antislavery writers to generate a sense of terror in their audience.
Focusing on a range of important antislavery figures, including David Walker, Nat Turner, Maria Stewart, Harriet Beecher Stowe, and John Brown, Apocalyptic Sentimentalism illustrates how antislavery discourse worked to redefine violence and vengeance as the ultimate expression (rather than denial) of love and sympathy. At the same time, these warnings of apocalyptic retribution enabled antislavery writers to express, albeit indirectly, fantasies of brutal violence against slaveholders. What began as a sentimental strategy quickly became an incendiary gesture, with antislavery reformers envisioning the complete annihilation of slaveholders and defenders of slavery.
[Introduction to] Indians Playing Indian: Multiculturalism and Contemporary Indigenous Art in North America
Contemporary indigenous peoples in North America confront a unique predicament. While they are reclaiming their historic status as sovereign nations, mainstream popular culture continues to depict them as cultural minorities similar to other ethnic Americans. These depictions of indigenous peoples as “Native Americans” complete the broader narrative of America as a refuge to the world’s immigrants and a home to contemporary multicultural democracies, such as the United States and Canada. But they fundamentally misrepresent indigenous peoples, whose American history has been not of immigration but of colonization. Monika Siebert’s Indians Playing Indian first identifies this phenomenon as multicultural misrecognition, explains its sources in North American colonial history and in the political mandates of multiculturalism, and describes its consequences for contemporary indigenous cultural production. It then explores the responses of indigenous artists who take advantage of the ongoing popular interest in Native American culture and art while offering narratives of the political histories of their nations in order to resist multicultural incorporation. Each chapter of Indians Playing Indian showcases a different medium of contemporary indigenous art—museum exhibition, cinema, digital fine art, sculpture, multimedia installation, and literary fiction—and explores specific rhetorical strategies artists deploy to forestall multicultural misrecognition and recover political meanings of indigeneity. The sites and artists discussed include the National Museum of the American Indian in Washington, DC; filmmakers at Inuit Isuma Productions; digital artists/photographers Dugan Aguilar, Pamela Shields, and Hulleah Tsinhnahjinnie; sculptor Jimmie Durham; and novelist LeAnne Howe.
[Introduction to] Posthumanism and Educational Research
Nathan Snaza and John A. Weaver
Focusing on the interdependence between human, animal, and machine, posthumanism redefines the meaning of the human being previously assumed in knowledge production. This movement challenges some of the most foundational concepts in educational theory and has implications within educational research, curriculum design and pedagogical interactions. In this volume, a group of international contributors use posthumanist theory to present new modes of institutional collaboration and pedagogical practice. They position posthumanism as a comprehensive theoretical project with connections to philosophy, animal studies, environmentalism, feminism, biology, queer theory and cognition. Researchers and scholars in curriculum studies and philosophy of education will benefit from the new research agendas presented by posthumanism.
[Introduction to] The Columbia Sourcebook of Mormons in the United States
Terryl Givens and Reid L. Nielson
This anthology offers rare access to key original documents illuminating Mormon history, theology, and culture in the United States from the nineteenth century to today. Brief introductions describe the theological significance of each text and its reflection of the practices, issues, and challenges that have defined and continue to define the Mormon community. These documents balance mainstream and peripheral thought and religious experience, institutional and personal perspective, and theoretical and practical interpretation, representing pivotal moments in LDS history and correcting decades of misinformation and stereotype.
The authors of these documents, male and female, not only celebrate but speak critically and question mainline LDS teachings on sexuality, politics, gender, race, polygamy, and other issues. Selections largely focus on the Salt Lake–based LDS tradition, with a section on the post–Joseph Smith splintering and its creation of a variety of similar yet different Mormon groups. The documents are arranged chronologically within specific categories to capture both the historical and doctrinal development of Mormonism in the United States.
[Introduction to] Identity and Leadership in Virtual Communities: Establishing Credibility and Influence
Dona J. Hickey and Joe Essid
The presence and ubiquity of the internet continues to transform the way in which we identify ourselves and others both online and offline. The development of virtual communities permits users to create an online identity to interact with and influence one another in ways that vary greatly from face-to-face interaction.
Identity and Leadership in Virtual Communities: Establishing Credibility and Influence explores the notion of establishing an identity online, managing it like a brand, and using it with particular members of a community. Bringing together a range of voices exemplifying how participants in online communities influence one another, this book serves as an essential reference for academicians, researchers, students, and professionals, including bloggers, software designers, and entrepreneurs seeking to build and manage their engagement online.
[Introduction to] The Cambridge Companion to Paradise Lost
This Companion presents fifteen short, accessible essays exploring the most important topics and themes in John Milton's masterpiece, Paradise Lost. The essays invite readers to begin their own independent exploration of the poem by equipping them with useful background knowledge, introducing them to key passages, and acquainting them with the current state of critical debates. Chapters are arranged to mirror the way the poem itself unfolds, offering exactly what readers need as they approach each movement of its grand design. Essays in Part I introduce the characters who frame the poem's story and set its plot and theological dynamics in motion. Part II deals with contextual issues raised by the early books, while Part III examines the epic's central and final episodes. The volume concludes with a meditation on the history of the poem's reception and a detailed guide to further reading, offering students and teachers of Milton fresh critical insights and resources for continuing scholarship.
[Introduction to] Consuming Traditions: Modernity, Modernism, and the Commodified Authentic
In an unprecedented phenomenon that swept across Britain at the turn of the nineteenth century, writers, advertisers, and architects began to create and sell images of an authentic cultural realm paradoxically considered outside the marketplace. Such images were located in nostalgic pictures of an idyllic, pre-industrial past, in supposedly original objects not derived from previous traditions, and in the ideal of a purified aesthetic that might be separated from the mass market. Presenting a lively, unique study of what she terms the "commodified authentic," Elizabeth Outka explores this crucial but overlooked development in the history of modernity with a piercing look at consumer culture and the marketing of authenticity in late nineteenth- and early twentieth-century Britain.
The book brings together a wide range of cultural sources, from the model towns of Bournville, Port Sunlight, and Letchworth; to the architecture of Edwin Lutyens and Selfridges department store; to work by authors such as Bernard Shaw, E. M. Forster, Henry James, D. H. Lawrence, James Joyce, and Virginia Woolf.
[Introduction to] Parley P. Pratt: The Apostle Paul of Mormonism
Terryl Givens and Matthew J. Grow
After Joseph Smith and Brigham Young, Parley P. Pratt was the most influential figure in early Mormon history and culture. Missionary, pamphleteer, theologian, historian, and martyr, Pratt was perennially stalked by controversy--regarded, he said, "almost as an Angel by thousands and counted an Imposter by tens of thousands."
Tracing the life of this colorful figure from his hardscrabble origins in upstate New York to his murder in 1857, Terryl Givens and Matthew Grow explore the crucial role Pratt played in the formation and expansion of early Mormonism. One of countless ministers inspired by the antebellum revival movement known as the Second Great Awakening, Pratt joined the Mormons in 1830 at the age of twenty three and five years later became a member of the newly formed Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, which vaulted him to the forefront of church leadership for the rest of his life. Pratt's missionary work--reaching from Canada to England, from Chile to California--won hundreds of followers, but even more important were his voluminous writings. Through books, newspaper articles, pamphlets, poetry, fiction, and autobiography, Pratt spread the Latter-day Saint message, battled the many who reviled it, and delineated its theology in ways that still shape Mormon thought.
Drawing on letters, journals, and other rich archival sources, Givens and Grow examine not only Pratt's writings but also his complex personal life. A polygamist who married a dozen times and fathered thirty children, Pratt took immense joy in his family circle even as his devotion to Mormonism led to long absences that put heavy strains on those he loved. It was during one such absence, a mission trip to the East, that the estranged husband of his twelfth wife shot and killed him--a shocking conclusion to a life that never lacked in drama.
[Introduction to] When Souls Had Wings: Pre-Mortal Existence in Western Thought
The idea of the pre-existence of the soul has been extremely important, widespread, and persistent throughout Western history--from even before the philosophy of Plato to the poetry of Robert Frost. When Souls Had Wings offers the first systematic history of this little explored feature of Western culture.
Terryl Givens describes the tradition of pre-existence as "pre-heaven"--the place where unborn souls wait until they descend to earth to be born. And typically it is seen as a descent--a falling away from a happier and untroubled state into the turbulent and sinful world we know. The title of the book refers to the idea put forward in antiquity that our souls begin with wings, and that only after shedding those wings do we fall to earth. The book not only traces the history of the idea of pre-existence, but also captures its meaning for those who have embraced it. Givens describes how pre-existence has been invoked to explain "the better angels of our nature," including the human yearning for transcendence and the sublime. Pre-existence has been said to account for why we know what we should not know, whether in the form of a Greek slave's grasp of mathematics, the moral sense common to humanity, or the human ability to recognize universals. The belief has explained human bonds that seem to have their own mysterious prehistory, salved the wounded sensibility of a host of thinkers who could not otherwise account for the unevenly distributed pain and suffering that are humanity's common lot, and has been posited by philosophers and theologians alike to salvage the principle of human freedom and accountability.
When Souls had Wings underscores how durable (and controversial) this idea has been throughout the history of Western thought, the theological dangers it has represented, and how prominently it has featured in poetry, literature, and art.
[Chapter 1 from] The Book of Mormon: A Very Short Introduction
With over 140 million copies in print, and serving as the principal proselytizing tool of one of the world's fastest growing faiths, the Book of Mormon is undoubtedly one of the most influential religious texts produced in the western world. Written by Terryl Givens, a leading authority on Mormonism, this compact volume offers the only concise, accessible introduction to this extraordinary work.
Givens examines the Book of Mormon first and foremost in terms of the claims that its narrators make for its historical genesis, its purpose as a sacred text, and its meaning for an audience which shifts over the course of the history it unfolds. The author traces five governing themes in particular--revelation, Christ, Zion, scripture, and covenant--and analyzes the Book's central doctrines and teachings. Some of these resonate with familiar nineteenth-century religious preoccupations; others consist of radical and unexpected takes on topics from the fall of Man to Christ's mortal ministries and the meaning of atonement. Givens also provides samples of a cast of characters that number in the hundreds, and analyzes representative passages from a work that encompasses tragedy, poetry, sermons, visions, family histories and military chronicles. Finally, this introduction surveys the contested origins and production of a work held by millions to be scripture, and reviews the scholarly debates that address questions of the record's historicity.
Here then is an accessible guide to what is, by any measure, an indispensable key to understanding Mormonism. But it is also an introduction to a compelling and complex text that is too often overshadowed by the controversies that surround it.
About the Series: Combining authority with wit, accessibility, and style, Very Short Introductions offer an introduction to some of life's most interesting topics. Written by experts for the newcomer, they demonstrate the finest contemporary thinking about the central problems and issues in hundreds of key topics, from philosophy to Freud, quantum theory to Islam.
[Introduction to] Joseph Smith Jr.: Reappraisals After Two Centuries
Terryl Givens and Reid L. Nielson
Mormon founder Joseph Smith is one of the most controversial figures of nineteenth-century American history, and a virtually inexhaustible subject for analysis. In this volume, fifteen scholars offer essays on how to interpret and understand Smith and his legacy. Including essays by both Mormons and non-Mormons, this wide-ranging collection is the only available survey of contemporary scholarly opinion on the extraordinary man who started one of the fastest growing religious traditions in the modern world.
[Introduction to] People of Paradox: A History of Mormon Culture
In People of Paradox, Terryl Givens traces the rise and development of Mormon culture from the days of Joseph Smith in upstate New York, through Brigham Young's founding of the Territory of Deseret on the shores of Great Salt Lake, to the spread of the Latter-Day Saints around the globe.
Throughout the last century and a half, Givens notes, distinctive traditions have emerged among the Latter-Day Saints, shaped by dynamic tensions--or paradoxes--that give Mormon cultural expression much of its vitality. Here is a religion shaped by a rigid authoritarian hierarchy and radical individualism; by prophetic certainty and a celebration of learning and intellectual investigation; by existence in exile and a yearning for integration and acceptance by the larger world. Givens divides Mormon history into two periods, separated by the renunciation of polygamy in 1890. In each, he explores the life of the mind, the emphasis on education, the importance of architecture and urban planning (so apparent in Salt Lake City and Mormon temples around the world), and Mormon accomplishments in music and dance, theater, film, literature, and the visual arts. He situates such cultural practices in the context of the society of the larger nation and, in more recent years, the world. Today, he observes, only fourteen percent of Mormon believers live in the United States.
Mormonism has never been more prominent in public life. But there is a rich inner life beneath the public surface, one deftly captured in this sympathetic, nuanced account by a leading authority on Mormon history and thought.
[Introduction to] Poverty and Progress in the U.S. South since 1920
Suzanne W. Jones and Mark Newman
Poverty, disease, and illiteracy had long bedeviled the U.S. South, even before the agricultural depression of the 1920s became subsumed within the Great Depression of the 1930s. The essays collected in this volume examine a variety of responses to economic depression and poverty. They recount specific battles for civil, educational, and labor rights, and explore the challenges and alternatives to the corporate South in the post World War II agribusiness era. Scholars from both the U.S. and Europe assess how far the South has come in the last century, what forces (from the Sears Roebuck Catalog to the Civil Rights Movement) have been at work in its transformation, and whether the region's reincarnation as the Sunbelt has lifted the burdens of southern history. Contributors assess labor strikes and demonstrations that have not always found a place in histories of the region and revisit and reassess key southern figures from Erskine Caldwell and James Agee to Albert Gore and Lyndon Johnson. They draw our attention to neglected writers whose representations of poverty deserve more critical attention, and they provide critical analysis of contemporary authors and filmmakers.
[Introduction to] The Latter-day Saint Experience in America
Provides the most comprehensive overview of Mormonism—one of the fast growing religions in the World—available in one volume.
Scholars have labeled the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, or Mormonism as it is better known, both the American Religion, and the next world faith. The Mormon saga includes early persecution, conflict, and pioneer resilience, against a backdrop of revolutionary religious, social, and economic practices. The greatest colonizing force in American history, Mormonism has outgrown its 19th-century isolation and theocratic roots to become one of the most prosperous and respected Christian communities in the country. This book examines the history of the movement, and considers carefully the reasons behind a perennial discord with American culture—and the American government—that only waned in the early decades of the 20th century. Givens also considers the range of Mormon doctrines—both familiar and peculiar—and overviews the background and content of the unique canon of Mormon scripture.
The Latter-day Saint Experience in America examines all aspects of how Mormons live, work, and worship. The book discusses: Mormon worship and Church organization; The intellectual and artistic heritage of the Latter-day Saints; Official Church teachings across a span of contemporary issues, from feminism to race to the environment; The tensions and future directions of the modern Church. Abundant appendices include a glossary of Mormonism, a timeline, a comparison with other Christian creeds, biographical sketches of Mormon luminaries, and an annotated bibliography useful for further study.
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