Cover: Roots of Modern Mormonism, from Harvard University PressCover: Roots of Modern Mormonism in E-DITION

Roots of Modern Mormonism

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$65.00 • £54.95 • €60.00

ISBN 9780674430839

Publication Date: 07/20/1979

250 pages


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Mark Leone comes to new conclusions about the evolution of Mormonism, both as a self-sufficient religious sect and as a movement within the broader context of American history. Applying the tools of anthropology for the first time to this subject, he identifies the features that have allowed an outcast utopia of the nineteenth century to achieve worldwide success in the twentieth.

The author explores the ways in which a minority survives in a hostile environment, both physical and cultural. He focuses especially on the Mormon settlements of eastern Arizona, whose rich records reveal in microcosm the workings of a modern theocracy. The early Mormon radicalism emerges as an appropriate response to contemporary conditions. With the shift of Mormonism from independence to colonial status at the turn of the century, Mormon ideas begin their transformation to conservatism, again illustrating the flexibility that is a key to the religion’s stunning success.

Leone’s broad range of sources, including diaries, native histories, judicial records, and correspondence, gives a full picture of Mormon life and history. He has also done extensive ethnographic field work in the Mormon settlements along the Little Colorado River, so as to be able to describe the movement in its own terms.

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Jacket: An Inquiry into Modes of Existence: An Anthropology of the Moderns, by Bruno Latour, translated by Catherine Porter, from Harvard University Press

Honoring Latour

In awarding Bruno Latour the 2021 Kyoto Prize for Arts and Philosophy, the Inamori Foundation said he has “revolutionized the conventional view of science” and “his philosophy re-examines ‘modernity’ based on the dualism of nature and society.” Below is an excerpt from An Inquiry into Modes of Existence: An Anthropology of the Moderns. For more than twenty years, scientific and technological controversies have proliferated in number and scope, eventually reaching the climate itself. Since geologists are beginning to use the term “Anthropocene” to designate the era of Earth’s history that follows the Holocene