When does an artist or author’s lifestyle matter? While the reader may only care about the quality of what is on the page, friends and relatives and neighbors may care very much about the lifestyle of the authors or artists in their lives. And when Mormonism enters the question, we end up caring a lot about a lifestyle that may have an impact on the author or artist’s eternal life.
The lifestyle of an artist, like that of any potential role model, might also influence admirers among the youth and young adults, and it was probably this potential influence that led to B. F. Cummings’ views of Bohemians, the romantic-era unconventional lifestyle associated with artists of the late 19th century.
Continue reading “Sunday Lit Crit Sermon: B.F. Cummings Jr. on Bohemians”
The third of seven posts and an introduction. See also Part II, Part I, Introduction
The murder of Joseph Smith and subsequent emigration of LDS Church members to Utah interrupted efforts to proselyte in most areas outside of the United States. Prior to the martyrdom, the Church had made some additional attempts to proselyte in other languages. Speakers of several other languages had joined the Church, many of whom were an important part of later missionary efforts, such as Dan Jones (Welsh), Peter O. Hansen (Danish), and Daniel Carn (German). Enough German language speakers joined the saints in Nauvoo that a German-speaking congregation was established there. Continue reading “A Short History of Mormon Publishing: Publishing in Foreign Missions”
Last year I purchased a bound volume of the 1949 issues of the missionary magazine of the Argentine and Uruguayan missions, El Mensajero Deseret, which I found in the basement of Sam Weller‘s in Salt Lake City. I had hoped that I might find there some articles originally written in Spanish by local members (not missionaries), and that I might there discover something of their perspective at the time. Unfortunately, my (still) somewhat cursory review, while it found many interesting articles, including one written by my grandfather that my family didn’t know about, failed to find any articles by local members and few originally written in Spanish.
I’m not sure how different things are today. Mission magazines like El Mensajero Deseret, which were meant for all members in the mission (not just the missionaries), have been replaced by the Church’s international magazine (in Spanish, La Liahona), and that magazine is largely a translation from English.
As a result of examples like this, I think its easy to assume that no Mormon cultural works are being produced outside of the English-speaking areas of the Church. In a comment to my post last week about What Should Mormons Know About Mormon Culture?, Anneke wrote:
“I’m uncomfortable with any attempt to define “Mormon Culture” that then limits that culture to “Anglophone Mormon Culture.” I realize that most of the time English is all we’ve got”¦”
I am also uncomfortable about this — but its hard for most of us, English-speaking residents of the US generally, to know much about what is being produced in Mexico or in France or Brazil or Japan. Its not like there are clear paths for getting materials from these places to the Mormon market in the US! I suspect that not a lot is being produced, given the low density of LDS Church members from each other in other countries, the lack of a market or way to distribute cultural works, and the near worship that foreign LDS Church members sometimes have for the Church in the U.S.
So, hoping that those who read this will add the works they know about, here’s a list of some of the works I know or have heard of. I’m sure there are plenty of others:
Continue reading “Help me find the “non-American” Mormon Culture”