The New Yorker: getting warmer


This month, The New Yorker has published two articles that take Mormonism seriously. The first was a “Critic at Large” (wherein the critic takes a look at several related works). Sadly, among the works considered was not Grant Hardy’s Understanding the Book of Mormon, which means that critic Adam Gopnick is unable to rise above the standard of Book-of-Mormon-as-lit criticism set by Edmund Wilson’s constantly quoted phrase, “farrago of balderdash.” But he does seem to have actually attempted reading it, even if he didn’t seek out a more experience guide. Which is more than I feel comfortable saying about John Lahr who probably takes Wilson’s word on everything. And let’s face it: Wilson was not always right. History’s on my side here, folks.

Anyway. Back to Gopnick.

Continue reading “The New Yorker: getting warmer”

Analyzing the Book of Mormon with Grant Hardy for fun and profit


Grant Hardy’s Understanding the Book of Mormon: A Reader’s Guide is unquestionably the most important piece of Mormon criticism in the last few years. The way he has dissected the Book’s text and structure is remarkable. And while of course Book of Mormon criticism has been done before, I don’t think anyone has taken it nearly as deeply.

(Which is funny because, if I have any complaint about Hardy’s book, it’s that sometimes it could have gone on for another thirty dozen pages without boring me. All I want for Christmas is for this book to be twice as long.) Continue reading “Analyzing the Book of Mormon with Grant Hardy for fun and profit”