Philip Barlow to be named Maxwell Institute associate director

Philip L. Barlow has accepted the position of associate director at Brigham Young University's Neal A. Maxwell Institute for Religious Scholarship. His tenure will officially begin upon his retirement from Utah State University in December 2018. Barlow has held the Leonard J. Arrington Endowed Chair in Mormon Studies at USU since 2007.

As associate director, Barlow will coordinate scholarly mentoring and supervise the Institute's various seminars, lectures, workshops, and discussion series.He will also continue in his capacity as a Neal A. Maxwell Fellow, furthering his research and writing on the “war in heaven” in the history of ideas, lore, and literature of Latter-day Saints.

Learn more about Barlow's appointment here

May Events

  • May 9, 16, 23
    Wednesday Brown Bag 
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  • May 14
    MI Guest Lecture—Kenneth L. Woodward,  “Is the Future of American Religion Already Behind Us?”
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  • May 24
    MI Guest Lecture—Adam S. Miller, “Life In Christ Before You Die”

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  • May 30
    MI Symposium—“Forgiveness & Reconciliation,” featuring Mpho Tutu, Joseph Sebarenzi, Lisa Faulkner-Byrne, and Deidre Green

    Learn more

Watch John Rogers's MI Guest Lecture on Milton and Mormonism

Did John Milton’s seventeenth-century epic poem Paradise Lost play a role in the early development of Mormon theology? Yale professor of English John Rogers addressed this question in a recent MI Guest Lecture at Brigham Young University, "Latter-Day Milton: Early Mormonism and the Political Theologies of Paradise Lost.

Rogers believes Milton’s speculative (and heretical) theology left an imprint on the conceptual and imaginative structures of early Mormon doctrines of Creation, the Fall, and redemption. Past scholars have noted parallels between Paradise Lost and the visionary writings of Joseph Smith in the Doctrine and Covenants.

According to Rogers, some of the most exciting Miltonic contributions to Mormon speculative theology emerged in the years just after Smith’s death in the work of Parley P. Pratt and Orson Pratt.


Meet our new visiting scholar, Lincoln Blumell

Lincoln H. Blumell has joined us at the Institute as a visiting scholar. He is an Associate Professor in the Department of Ancient Scripture at Brigham Young University (Provo), specializing in Early Christianity and Greek and Coptic papyrology and epigraphy.

While at the Institute, Lincoln will be working on a monograph on Didymus the Blind’s lectures on Psalms that is currently under review with Society of Biblical Literature’s series Writings from the Greco-Roman World. Watch the Institute blog for updates about Blumell's work. 

Catherine Taylor's book on Mary in early Christian iconography 

Catherine Taylor (Maxwell Institute visiting scholar, 2016-17) recently published her first monograph, Late Antique Images of the Virgin Annunciate Spinning: Allotting the Scarlet and the Purple. The book offers an art historical and interdisciplinary look at the earliest images of Mary spinning—images which present an idealized view of matronage. Popular devotion toward the mother of Jesus reflected domestic concerns, in contrast with later traditional ascetic models for Mary. We look forward to Taylor's return to the Institute as a visiting scholar this fall. 

Subscriptions now available 
Subscriptions for the Journal of Book of Mormon Studies and the Mormon Studies Review are now available through the University of Illinois Press. 
Subscribe here.
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Catch up on episode #78—The development of LDS liturgy and cosmology
Jonathan Stapley joins us on the latest episode of the Maxwell Institute Podcast. He talks about Latter-day Saint priesthood and ritual—from baby blessings and baptism, to temple sealings, and everything else in between. His new book from Oxford University Press is called The Power of Godliness: Mormon Liturgy and Ritual. 
Listen here or read the transcript here.
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