Talk:Life of Joseph Smith from 1831 to 1834

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This article[edit]

I realize that

a) This article has been copied wholesale from the original article on Joseph Smith, Jr.

b) It will probably be (and in fact needs to be) split up, at least once more.

c) Even as it stands, it needs MAJOR work and expansion.

However, I pretty much did this so we could make the article on Joseph Smith, Jr. more concise and readable, without losing any information. That's my reason. Please work on this article. --Trevdna 15:55, 13 January 2006 (UTC)

Plural marriage[edit]

Re: recent edit asserting that the issue of J. Smith's polygamy is not settled. Dated sources please -- if this issue is still in contention, it would be appropriate for a paragraph in a number of articles. WBardwin 22:47, 10 February 2006 (UTC)

Subjectivity[edit]

As a non-mormon (atheist) reader, I can't help but think this article appears rather subjective. I can't see a single source that is not either a Mormon religious document, or a scholar/follower of the religion. It is akin to suggesting King David defeated Goliath in year something BC, citing it as verified history, with the only sources being the Bible and related documents and scholars. I know this is all a bit of a touchy subject, but religious documents and church scholars being used as sources for church related biographies is about as far from objective as one can get. Khahla (talk) 02:20, 15 December 2010 (UTC)

Being a believer does not necessarily mean that one cannot also be true to the historical method, and be a respected and respectable historian and scholar. Mormon studies (as an academic discipline) by those who are not of that faith tradition is relatively new, so the larger portion of what is currently available on any particular related topic is often both by and for the Latter Day Saints themselves. What should not be welcome in the article (and is thankfully missing) are items of Mormon folklore, or sources that are unduly apologetic, polemic, or anti-whatever. -- 208.81.184.4 (talk) 17:04, 15 December 2010 (UTC)

Yes I think that's a very valid point about Mormon studies being somewhat limited, and I agree that one can be a believer of a faith and follow rigorous academic standards - depending of course on how strongly one believes. It's not uncommon to meet someone who is unwilling to believe something, even in the face of overwhelming evidence. The problem is also that Brigham Young University - the oldest and by far the largest LDS educational institution and source of most studies in the field, has issued statements that limit Academic freedom at brigham young university including the dismissal of faculty who speak (much less publish) material that contradicts church doctrine. Some archeological and historical research conducted by BYU scholars is...colorful to say the least. Your point about the article not being unduly apologetic or polemic is quite correct, so consider any objection withdrawn. Khahla (talk) 02:16, 16 December 2010 (UTC)