Tamu Thomas-Smith: Speaker for Martin Luther King, Jr. Day


She was raised by her grandmother, Susie Mae Young Thomas, who was a civil rights leader. She grew up knowing Susie's history--of being denied classes other than those in domestic service, and knowing that a "sea of brown"--Hispanics, blacks, others who knew prejudice far too well--finally protested in favor of Susie and the others who were determined not to be held back.She raised her five sisters as well as the children she and her husband had.She portrayed Jane Manning James for a … [Read more...]

Blind Man Given Sight


In 1979, I was living with my first husband in Royal Oak, Michigan. I was expecting a child, a girl, and I loved the bigness of my body.I see my daughter now from an entirely different perspective, of course. I see her down the years as my naked newborn; my smiling 2-month-old with hair like wispy dandelion seeds; my three-year-old whose family was breaking up and who didn't want to live so far from her daddy; my four-year-old who wore a white-tiered formal when I married Bruce Young; my … [Read more...]



In LDS literature, we are talking about the Mormon concept of the pre-existence, and then comparing some of Joseph Smith's revolutionary concepts with their romanticized versions depicted in Saturday's Warriors.We begin with the King Follett discourse, given at the funeral of a man who was crushed in a well. Joseph Smith chose to speak about the nature of God and pre-existent spirits "capable of enlargement." … [Read more...]

I Am Jane–music script

The Jane James monument, depicting her giving "two pounds of flour, it being half she had" to Eliza Partridge Lyman

This is my invitation to everyone in Utah Valley to help us produce I am Jane at BYU during Black History Month. Below is the music script. To read the actual script, purchase Saints on Stage, edited by Mahonri Stewart. I am working on getting support from the theatre and music departments so that participants can get credit. Those in my Mormon Lit class can also meet requirements by helping with the production. If you don't know Jane's story, you NEED to help with this! … [Read more...]

Mormon Lit Syllabus

Helmut Huebener, Rudi Wobbe and Karl-Heinz Schnibbe

Requirements •Regular quizzes on the readings (If you are absent the day a quiz is given, you may take it late, but for only half credit.) •Mormon literary events–you will attend one event besides the AML conference and write up a short response essay. These events may be author readings, LDS films (such as Nobody Knows: The Untold Story of Black Mormons or specifically LDS dance/music concerts or an LDS play.Participate in a group Presentation•Final Project Interview with modern Mo … [Read more...]

Literature of the Latter-day Saints


For those who would like to join the Mormon Lit class (you will get spiritual but not academic credit), here are the texts:Eliza Partridge’s journal: http://partridge.parkinsonfamily.org/histories/eliza-diary-&-misc.htm Jane James’s life story (in supplement or at http://www.ldsgenesisgroup.org/archivenews/jane_story.html ) FEMALE RITUAL HEALING IN MORMONISM (http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=1754069 ) King Follett Discourse Added Upon (Nephi Anderson) Huebener- Rog … [Read more...]

Messiah in Patsun, Guatemala

Blair kids in Merida, Mexico--with Julia Blair and Beth Groberg Stratton

My father, a linguist, specialized in Mayan dialects. That meant that while growing up in Provo, Utah, I had a Mayan nanny named Hermana Yalibot. She always wore the same clothes: a white blouse embroidered with bright pansies, and a blue woven skirt. I now recognize her attire as typical of her region-Coban, Guatemala-and know that her skirt is called a corte and her blouse a huipil. She had embroidered the flowers herself. (Most areas of Guatemala have distinctive huipiles, personalized by the … [Read more...]