Each year, Clayton Christensen finishes his class at Harvard Business School by giving a lecture on the lessons he has learned during his life. In 2010, he was asked to give a summary of those lessons to the entire student body. Christensen’s lessons were soon being referred to in academic journals and news outlets around the world – and for good reason.
“The Council of Fifty: What the Records Reveal About Mormon History,” is a timely book published by BYU’s Religious Studies Center. While the minutes of the council were published in their totality via the Joseph Smith Papers in 2016, they still remain somewhat inaccessible to general readers. “The Council of Fifty” contains 15 essays by leading scholars about relevant topics of interest.
A companion article to this review will appear shortly in the Deseret News under the title, “Five fascinating facts about the Council of Fifty.”
I am pleased to announce the editors of this compilation, Matthew J. Grow and R. Eric Smith, will be participating in the “10 questions” interview series on Continue reading “Book Review – The Council of Fifty: What the records reveal about Mormon history”
John Gee is perhaps the leading Mormon commentator on the Book of Abraham – a portion of Mormon scripture that is simultaneously vital to the Mormon belief of premortal existence and heavily debated inside of academic circles. As a believing Mormon with a Ph.D. in Egyptology from Yale University, Gee brings a wonderful mix of perspectives to the discussion.
“An Introduction to the Book of Abraham” is precisely that – an introduction of the issues most important to both believers and scholars. The book is quite matter-of-fact in its tone, although there is the sense of subtle chastisement for both believers and scholars who approach the book with bias and extremism. As a result, the reader never feels compelled to come down on either side of any issue. Instead, the book serves quite nicely as an informative introduction regardless of any preconceived opinions.
Perhaps my favorite feature of the book is Continue reading “Book Review: An Introduction to the Book of Abraham”