Is DCP Accusing the Brethren of Censorship?

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Re: Is DCP Accusing the Brethren of Censorship?

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Gadianton wrote:
Sat Sep 12, 2020 9:52 pm
Without even reading Gee's book, it can be dismissed for this reason. I would say this is the first problem. But it's not just picking scholars who agree with him, it's that he's not actually doing any research. He has no interest in finding the real answers to sociological questions. He assumes a very conservative version of the Church is right and that the thinking has been done, and then combs through whatever is out there to justify the Church.
SOP for Mopologetics, eh?
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Re: Is DCP Accusing the Brethren of Censorship?

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The Rev: "SOP for Mopologetics, eh?'

Yep. Some critics out there don't get that he really is swimming in his own lane.
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Re: Is DCP Accusing the Brethren of Censorship?

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Doctor Scratch wrote:I wonder if our colleagues know the rich history behind Dr. Peterson's use of that quotation? Of course, it was the epigraph for Dr. P.'s notorious article--an attack piece that followed in the wake of legal threats from Signature Books--called "Questions to Legal Answers." (And yes: he misspells the title in the "peer reviewed" article, too, and he does it at the same time that he thanks Hamblin and Welch for having reviewed the draft!)
Ah yes, I now recall your incisive analysis of that quotation ("Shut up he explained" in the original) during an evening lecture at Cassius many years ago. I would need to retrieve my class notes from your advanced seminar in Mopologetics to refresh my recollection, but I do recall that you questioned whether Dr. Peterson would release a copy of the infamous memorandum summarizing a conversation between a former FARMS president and a BYU employee regarding the Signature Books titles sold at the BYU bookstore. You will undoubtedly recall that Dr. Peterson's article more or less denied George Smith's allegation that a former FARMS president attempted to have all Signature Books titles banned from the bookstore (see "Editor's Introduction: Questions to Legal Answers," xviii-xix). Twenty-eight years have now passed, but, as far as I know, the memo still hasn't seen the light of day.

As an aside, I have it on good authority that BYU students studiously avoid enrolling in any classes held late in the evening or with final examinations scheduled for the very last period of the very last day of semester final examinations. Your advanced seminar on Mopologetics ran from 9-10:15 p.m. twice a week and there was a waiting list to take the course. Plus, not one Cassius student who took your seminar cared a whit that the final examination was held on Christmas Eve.
Doctor Scratch wrote:But his reference to the Lardner work is interesting for other reasons:
In 1919 Daisy Ashford, a woman living in England, unearthed the manuscript of a novella she had written thirty years earlier, when she was just nine years old. Ashford managed to find a publisher for her precocious Victorian society novel (à la Thackeray) and it appeared, misspellings and malapropisms intact, as The Young Visiters, or Mr. Salteena’s Plan. The book became an instant, phenomenal best-seller on both sides of the Atlantic. Recently The Paris Review’s Alice Bolin came across the book and discussed how, a century ago, “readers regarded it as a remarkable specimen of children’s grand and unselfconscious ridiculousness.”

Wait a second.... Nine years old? That's impossible! How could she do it? Did she have a seer stone to help her with the composition? Read on:
Library of America wrote:Although the novel’s provenance has been fairly well verified, many skeptics initially questioned its authorship, with some critics believing that it had actually been written by Peter Pan author J. M. Barrie (who contributed a preface for the book when it was first published). Ring Lardner was among those who doubted that Ashford had written the novel as a nine-year-old (or at all). In a 1925 letter, when asked to review The Prince of Washington Square (by nineteen-year-old Harry Liscomb), he similarly doubted the claims for its authorship, adding, “I didn’t, and I don’t, believe Daisy Ashford in spite of [English novelist Frank] Swinnerton’s testimony and that of other ‘witnesses.’ ”
Wow: my head is spinning. It's so seldom that I see so many references to Mopologetics crammed into a single paragraph. Peter Pan, eh? Now, why does mention of that name seem oddly relevant? And, wow, a *nineteen-year-old* was able to write an entire book, too? Blow after blow continues to rain down on the Mopologists. And how do you like that last line? Ring Lardner himself is trashing the claim that Ashford wrote her "amazing" book! The topper is the last bit: he actually puts the word "witnesses" in scare quotes!

Plus, you get the bonus of the backstory as to why DCP uses the quote so often: it's because one of the Library of America editors told him to:
We recently asked Ian Frazier (who edited the just-published Library of America collection of Ring Lardner’s best work) which Lardner work was his favorite:
Very interesting! You sort of have to give credit to the Heartlanders--they were the ones who spotted the Mopologists' "deep cover" tactics. And here is another example: you have another case of prominent critics (such as Lardner) claiming that some "extraordinary" literary production (such as a novel written by a nine-year-old girl) is a "fraud," but the whole claim is apparently "saved" thanks to the testimony of "witnesses." So long as you get an institution like the Library of America to say in print that the "provenance has been fairly well verified," then everything is A-okay. But the problem with the Book of Mormon is that its provenance is allegedly from God, and from an angel, and from gold plates that can no longer be verified or examined.

Still, you have to find it interesting that Dr. Peterson so often pulls a quote from a novella that's connected to this strange history. And hey: if a 9-year-old girl can write a novel, then why is it so odd to think that Joseph Smith could have written the Book of Mormon?
Extraordinary work here, my dear Doctor! I am, of course, very familiar with Lardner's book, but I had not a clue--not one!--regarding its intriguing connections to Daisy Ashford's novella (which I have not read) and Mopologetics! Ashford "unearthed" a manuscript? What are the odds? (I shouldn't be surprised by your findings and penetrating insights; there are very good reasons that you hold the B.H. Roberts Chair of Mopologetic Studies and I remain a Cassius ABBA (all but bachelor of arts.)) I do hope that you will publish on this topic very soon. I also hope that Dr. Carmack will look for the presence of Early Modern English in The Young Visiters, or Mr. Salteena’s Plan.
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Re: Is DCP Accusing the Brethren of Censorship?

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A short literary passage that seems to me increasingly apropos to our culture of rising intolerance and cancellation — see this egregiously silly case, for example — appears at Ring Lardner, The Young Immigrants (Indianapolis: BobbsMerrill, 1920), 78:

“‘Shut up,’ he explained.”
That's really interesting, and I especially appreciate Doctor Scratch's literary-historical analysis of the deeper meaning behind Dr. P.'s use of this passage. Is this unintentional or, dare I say, a veiled form of confession?

Something else I find quite humorous here is how this quote illustrates the inverse of Mopologetic method without any change in the power dynamic. Allow me to rewrite Lardner here:

"In response to the child's simple, direct, and innocent query, her father embarked upon one of those lengthy, detailed, and altogether befuddling explanations that was tantamount to saying, in its superfluity of words and jargon, 'Shut up.'"

And that, my friends, captures the spirit of Book of Abraham apologetics à la Gee and Muhlestein. Honestly, we can say the same thing about the book of pseudo-sociology that has just been "suppressed" (i.e., had the implicit ecclesiastical imprimatur of Deseret Book sales removed).

The irony, of course, is that, as I have said in this very thread, the decision to have such a book pulled is consistent with the modus operandi of an undemocratic organization such as the LDS Church, which both asserts and reserves its right and freedom as a legally recognized religious organization and corporation the ability to take such unilateral action without consulting anyone, including the book's author.

If this were a book the Mopologists found offensive, then they would surely rejoice at its removal and would be the first to remind those who mourned the decision that the LDS Church was undoubtedly within its rights to do so, and that we could comfortably assume that this was perhaps a manifestation of the wisdom of revelation as conveyed through a general authority to the managers at Deseret Book.

I don't know what to say about this situation except that the sword of Damocles hangs over the heads of all who subject themselves to the tyranny of an undemocratic organization. Live by the sword, die by the sword. It is delicious to contemplate that sword dangling over the heads of our enemies, but when it hangs over our own heads, we start to justify our predicament in ways we would never dream of doing for them.

In this case, the sword has fallen on what appears to me to be a crappy book written by an author who is unqualified in the field he chose to comment in. Maybe it was the mercenary calculation of some middle management person that here was a book that was more potential trouble than it was worth.
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Re: Is DCP Accusing the Brethren of Censorship?

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Tom wrote:
Mon Sep 14, 2020 8:19 am

Extraordinary work here, my dear Doctor! I am, of course, very familiar with Lardner's book, but I had not a clue--not one!--regarding its intriguing connections to Daisy Ashford's novella (which I have not read) and Mopologetics! Ashford "unearthed" a manuscript? What are the odds? (I shouldn't be surprised by your findings and penetrating insights; there are very good reasons that you hold the B.H. Roberts Chair of Mopologetic Studies and I remain a Cassius ABBA (all but bachelor of arts.)) I do hope that you will publish on this topic very soon. I also hope that Dr. Carmack will look for the presence of Early Modern English in The Young Visiters, or Mr. Salteena’s Plan.
Very funny. I'm sure if Dr. Carmack looked, he would find EmodE, as EmodE is everywhere a good mopologists wants it to be.
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Re: Is DCP Accusing the Brethren of Censorship?

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Very interesting. It would seem that both FAIR Mormon and Amazon have restocked Gee's book, and yet, neither Deseret Book nor the BYU Religious Studies Center has done the same. Is there a secret internecine war underway? Somebody is clearly attempting to make an ideological point. You had better believe that the Mopologists are plotting their revenge.
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Re: Is DCP Accusing the Brethren of Censorship?

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Kishkumen wrote:
Mon Sep 14, 2020 10:29 am
A short literary passage that seems to me increasingly apropos to our culture of rising intolerance and cancellation — see this egregiously silly case, for example — appears at Ring Lardner, The Young Immigrants (Indianapolis: BobbsMerrill, 1920), 78:

“‘Shut up,’ he explained.”
That's really interesting, and I especially appreciate Doctor Scratch's literary-historical analysis of the deeper meaning behind Dr. P.'s use of this passage. Is this unintentional or, dare I say, a veiled form of confession?
I think that, in part, this is true. I think there is a mercenary dimension to Mopologetics: they were all steeped in anti-Mormon literature, and were basically "transformed" by it--sort of along the same lines as that old cliché from Nietzsche about "looking into the abyss." I think that they kind of saw all these dead ends that they were confronting, and rather opportunistically saw how they could exploit these oddities in order to "up" their social capital within the LDS community. So, by stealing tidbits from the RLDS, from Ashford, and other sources, they get to go on free cruises, and lap up the other compensation that has come their way thanks to their exploitation of these various odds and ends.
"[I]f, while hoping that everybody else will be honest and so forth, I can personally prosper through unethical and immoral acts without being detected and without risk, why should I not?." --Daniel Peterson, 6/4/14

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Re: Is DCP Accusing the Brethren of Censorship?

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Midgely
I trust that everyone who is rational will have noticed that Professor Peterson has found a way of hiding downvotes. Disqus has provided a way to do this to blunt this kind of thing, since it seems to take place on other blogs on the Disqus platform. I am not sure why Disqus programmers could not figure out a way to identify this sort of mischief and send whoever is responsible to a permanent Sin Bin. Or to find a way of preventing this kind of mischief.
https://www.patheos.com/blogs/danpeters ... qus_thread

Oh, the irony

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Re: Is DCP Accusing the Brethren of Censorship?

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What is the status of this book? It is being sold on Amazon.

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Re: Is DCP Accusing the Brethren of Censorship?

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Hi Bot. Hope you and yours are doing well.
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Re: Is DCP Accusing the Brethren of Censorship?

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Yahoo Bot wrote:
Thu Sep 17, 2020 11:02 am
What is the status of this book? It is being sold on Amazon.
It's strange: the book *is* available at Amazon and at FAIR Mormon, and yet it appears to have been yanked from booksellers that have closer ties to the institutional Church.
"[I]f, while hoping that everybody else will be honest and so forth, I can personally prosper through unethical and immoral acts without being detected and without risk, why should I not?." --Daniel Peterson, 6/4/14

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Re: Is DCP Accusing the Brethren of Censorship?

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An interesting post over at "Faith-Promoting Rumor," which argues that Gee's book should be blamed primarily on the academic inadequacy of BYU's Religious Education program, and the Religious Studies Center. I think there are places where the post is misguided (for example, I don't know why the OP bothered to sift through the principal players' CVs. What was that supposed to prove? Most academics' CVs are underwhelming, just like how most people are underwhelming, depending on your definition of "excellence." Have fun living in that world.). That said, the post is quite good in terms of parsing out the university politics and faulting the way the conflicting interests have been managed.
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Re: Is DCP Accusing the Brethren of Censorship?

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Doctor Scratch wrote:
Wed Sep 16, 2020 10:09 pm
Very interesting. It would seem that both FAIR Mormon and Amazon have restocked Gee's book, and yet, neither Deseret Book nor the BYU Religious Studies Center has done the same. Is there a secret internecine war underway? Somebody is clearly attempting to make an ideological point. You had better believe that the Mopologists are plotting their revenge.
I doubt it is a coincidence that FAIR Mormon has become the new hub for alt-right culture warrior material and personalities. Hanna Seariac is their new podcast star, and she recently interviewed the alt-right, DezNat-adjacent BYU student Tristan Mourier. Gee's book fits into this orbit perfectly. It is fake science and phony scholarship designed to pump up a certain ideological take on the Mormon situation.

So, where the LDS Church itself will shy away from the alt-right, FAIR Mormon seems to be embracing it.
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Re: Is DCP Accusing the Brethren of Censorship?

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Kishkumen wrote:
Fri Sep 18, 2020 5:02 am
Doctor Scratch wrote:
Wed Sep 16, 2020 10:09 pm
Very interesting. It would seem that both FAIR Mormon and Amazon have restocked Gee's book, and yet, neither Deseret Book nor the BYU Religious Studies Center has done the same. Is there a secret internecine war underway? Somebody is clearly attempting to make an ideological point. You had better believe that the Mopologists are plotting their revenge.
I doubt it is a coincidence that FAIR Mormon has become the new hub for alt-right culture warrior material and personalities. Hanna Seariac is their new podcast star, and she recently interviewed the alt-right, DezNat-adjacent BYU student Tristan Mourier. Gee's book fits into this orbit perfectly. It is fake science and phony scholarship designed to pump up a certain ideological take on the Mormon situation.

So, where the LDS Church itself will shy away from the alt-right, FAIR Mormon seems to be embracing it.
Is there a serious schism forming?

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Re: Is DCP Accusing the Brethren of Censorship?

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I have a question wrote:
Fri Sep 18, 2020 5:24 am
Is there a serious schism forming?
I doubt it. Mormonism has long accommodated and provided a home for crazy radicals on the Right. As long as they do not threaten the LDS Church, they can sail along with impunity as active members in good standing. The Church will not place its official stamp of approval on them, but they are also not rushing out to condemn, silence, or discipline them.
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Re: Is DCP Accusing the Brethren of Censorship?

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Kishkumen wrote:
Fri Sep 18, 2020 5:02 am
Doctor Scratch wrote:
Wed Sep 16, 2020 10:09 pm
Very interesting. It would seem that both FAIR Mormon and Amazon have restocked Gee's book, and yet, neither Deseret Book nor the BYU Religious Studies Center has done the same. Is there a secret internecine war underway? Somebody is clearly attempting to make an ideological point. You had better believe that the Mopologists are plotting their revenge.
I doubt it is a coincidence that FAIR Mormon has become the new hub for alt-right culture warrior material and personalities. Hanna Seariac is their new podcast star, and she recently interviewed the alt-right, DezNat-adjacent BYU student Tristan Mourier. Gee's book fits into this orbit perfectly. It is fake science and phony scholarship designed to pump up a certain ideological take on the Mormon situation.

So, where the LDS Church itself will shy away from the alt-right, FAIR Mormon seems to be embracing it.
I don't know, Reverend. I sort of wonder if the Mopologists themselves feel a bit adrift. I'm reminded of that scene, early on in Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan, where Kirk and McCoy share an illicit drink of Romulan ale, and they reflect on their place in the galactic landscape as they grow ever older. The Mopologists have always seen themselves as conservative bulwarks against "liberal" excess (I guess?), but today they can't help but ignore where the more extreme fringes of American conservatism have gone. What's weird is their uncertainty: you get the sense that they are poised to jump fully onboard with Seariac and the hardcore DezNat/alt-right, but they are worried that Biden will win the election and they will once again have to fight against inevitable marginalization. Well, the alternative to that, of course, is Trump, but Dr. Peterson has been forbidden from speaking on any topic relating to politics. For what it's worth, I don't think he cares who wins, so long as DezNat-style fascism is allowed to flourish.
"[I]f, while hoping that everybody else will be honest and so forth, I can personally prosper through unethical and immoral acts without being detected and without risk, why should I not?." --Daniel Peterson, 6/4/14

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Re: Is DCP Accusing the Brethren of Censorship?

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Any indication who ordered the book off Deseret Book's bookshelves?

Sherri Dew is still CEO.

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Re: Is DCP Accusing the Brethren of Censorship?

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One might want to ask who is Hanna Seariac's faculty advisor at BYU that might be feeding her information behind the scenes?
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Re: Is DCP Accusing the Brethren of Censorship?

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"Sherri Dew is still CEO."

Good point. That's virtual assurance that the Tin Man himself knows about it.

Sure, the Brethren may not literally be behind the banning. But they obviously don't think the book will really help people stay faithful, otherwise they'd get involved.
Lou Midgley 08/20/2020: "...meat wad," and "cockroach" are pithy descriptions of human beings used by gemli? They were not fashioned by Professor Peterson.

LM 11/23/2018: one can explain away the soul of human beings...as...a Meat Unit, to use Professor Peterson's clever derogatory description of gemli's ideology.

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Re: Is DCP Accusing the Brethren of Censorship?

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Yahoo Bot wrote:
Sat Sep 19, 2020 11:43 am
Any indication who ordered the book off Deseret Book's bookshelves?

Sherri Dew is still CEO.
It appears that the allegation has disappeared, but unless I am mistaken, there was a comment somewhere that claimed that Seariac's mentor was none other than *John Gee*!!! Holy crap! Wow! If that is true, then the whole train has gone completely off the rails. No wonder she has deleted her blog. A full-blown meltdown is underway.
"[I]f, while hoping that everybody else will be honest and so forth, I can personally prosper through unethical and immoral acts without being detected and without risk, why should I not?." --Daniel Peterson, 6/4/14

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Re: Is DCP Accusing the Brethren of Censorship?

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Kishkumen wrote:
Sat Sep 12, 2020 6:10 am
Maybe further revelation will supersede this revelation.
Perhaps Sic et Non is thinking the squeaky revelation will get the grease, so they need to be squeakier.
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