Neither Male Nor Female

Galatians 3:28 is certainly the most important biblical text in feminist and anti-feminist interpretation in the last century.  This text promises that "there is no longer Jew or Greek, there is no longer slave or free, there is no longer male and female; for all of you are one in Christ Jesus."  The last pair in this list, male and female, has proven the most controversial.  While most comemntators accept relatively straightforwardly that social divisions between ethnicities and … [Read more...]

Wait, that’s in the Bible?! Celestial Sex

Background/The Divine Council … [Read more...]

A Feminist Response to Valerie Hudson

Valerie Hudson Cassler’s recent defense of heterosexual-only marriage offers a heteronormative account of human relationships that pits (heterosexual) women against homosexuals, where “the possibility of human freedom and peace” hang in the balance.[1] However, Hudson’s article suffers from the typical problems of heteronormative feminism, which as been critiqued since the 1980’s in American feminist circles,[2] not only because it denies the label of “woman” to the lesbian, but … [Read more...]

Gender, Mormonism, and Transsexuality

The declaration that "gender is an essential characteristic of individual premortal, mortal, and eternal identity and purpose" is presumably attempted to rebut the second-wave feminist articulation of the sex/gender dichotomy which sees sex as natural and gender as culturally/socially constructed, and therefore malleable. While it is perhaps unclear that "The Family: A Proclamation to the World" is theoretically sophisticated enough to be aware of the sex/gender distinction that emerged in the … [Read more...]

Christmas and Mary

1 And there appeared a great wonder in heaven; a woman clothed with the sun, and the moon under her feet, and upon her head a crown of twelve stars: 2 And she being with child cried, travailing in birth, and pained to be delivered. 3 And there appeared another wonder in heaven; and behold a great red dragon, having seven heads and ten horns, and seven crowns upon his heads. 4 And his tail drew the third part of the stars of heaven, and did cast them to the earth: and the dragon stood … [Read more...]

Call for Papers

"Reconciliations and Reformulations": A Conference for LDS Graduate Students in Religious Studies Harvard University, February 20-21, 2009 http://faithandknowledge.org Many Latter-day Saints experience their scholarship and their religion as clashing cultures, each with its competing values and contradictory conclusions. Religious studies students especially struggle to reconcile their faith and the knowledge they acquire in graduate school. The forms this reconciliation take--including the … [Read more...]

What if…?

What if someone ordained their wife to the priesthood? Let's say that this husband wanted to have his wife assist in priesthood blessings in the home, or be able to perform blessings in his absence. She would not be ordained to any particular office, but given the priesthood power for specific ordinances. Let us also say that this woman received it, but never in fact used it. Let us also say that this husband is a bishop, and interviewed the candidate and determined her worthiness. If he … [Read more...]

Mormon Literalism and the Body

Recently, Terryl Givens has celebrated one of the Mormon "heresies" (his term) of "literalism." He argues that Mormonism has eschewed the modern movement towards metaphorical understandings of religion, insisting upon its "literal" relationship to certain "facts," such as the First Vision, the materiality of the Book of Mormon, and even literalized heaven by making it material. This literalism, however, is distinct from fundamentalist Christianity which insists on a different kind of biblical … [Read more...]


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