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Community Invited To Join UVU Students In Exploring America’s Mormon Experience

24 June 2013 No Comment

June 24, 2013

For Immediate Release

University Marketing & Communications: Mike Rigert

Written by: Heather Wrigley

Beginning June 25 and running through Aug. 8, Utah Valley University will host a new course entitled “Mormonism in the American Experience.” The class is free and open to the community and will feature regular class sessions with weekly guest lectures. Those interested in attending may contact Robert McMurray at robert.mcmurray@uvu.edu to reserve seating through UVU Community Education.

“The class is intended to address local interests and to allow the community to get a taste of what is happening in our classes at UVU,” said Brian Birch, director of UVU’s Religious Studies program and co-creator of the course. “We’ve hosted dozens of Mormon studies events over the years, so we figured the time was right to allow for some broader connections to classroom learning.”

The course will examine the experience of Mormonism within the context of American cultural history and religious thought, focusing on how Mormonism developed against the backdrop of social movements and trends. Topics will range from Christian millennialism, anti-Mormon movements, Mormon women’s history, religion in American popular culture, and the relation of Mormonism to the broader Christian culture.

The class (RLST 366R) will run Tuesdays and Thursdays from 5:30 to 8:15 p.m. and will feature several guest lecturers:

• Matthew S. Holland, president of UVU and author of “Bonds of Affection: Civic Charity and the Making of America”

• Colleen McDannell, professor of history and Sterling M. McMurrin Professor of Religious Studies at the University of Utah and author of “Material Christianity: Religion and Popular Culture in America”

• Patrick Mason, Howard W. Hunter Chair in Mormon Studies at Claremont Graduate University and author of “The Mormon Menace: Violence and Anti-Mormonism in the Postbellum South”

• Philip Barlow, Arrington Chair of Mormon History and Culture at Utah State University and author of “Mormons and the Bible”

• Fred Gedicks, Guy Anderson Chair and professor of law at the J. Reuben Clark Law School at Brigham Young University

• Grant Underwood, professor of history at BYU and author of “The Millenarian World of Early Mormonism”

• Spencer Fluhman, assistant professor of history at BYU and author of “A Peculiar People: Mormonism and the Making of Religion in Nineteenth Century America”

• James Faulconer, Richard L. Evans Professor of Religious Understanding at BYU

The class will be taught by Birch and other UVU faculty members, including Boyd Petersen, program coordinator for Mormon Studies at UVU, and Blair Van Dyke, coordinator of Mormon Studies and Interfaith Engagement at the Orem Institute of Religion.

Class sessions will be recorded and made available online shortly thereafter for those interested in the subject.

For more information on format and location, visit uvu.edu/religiousstudies/mormonismamericanexperience/macmain.html or contact McMurray at robert.mcmurray@uvu.edu.

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