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An Experiment on the Word: Reading Alma 32 Paperback – October 27, 2011

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Paperback, October 27, 2011
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Editorial Reviews


If one of the root meanings of the word religion is to reread, this much-anticipated first installment of the Mormon Theology Seminar is deeply religious work. These essays model a charitable attentiveness to the word that bears such unmistakably good fruit you will never read the scriptures again in the same way. Indeed, they remind us that we never should. --George Handley, Professor of Humanities, Brigham Young University

Here the Mormon Theology Seminar brings its experimental approach to bear on the experiment of faith itself. Overturning staid and stuffy notions of theology, the essays in this volume shed a prismatic light varied, brilliant, mobile on Alma s classic exploration of faith and knowledge, humility and hope, poverty and perfect love. Situating the discourse in the vexed social context of Zoramite religion, contributors draw out insights political, textual, philosophical, and deeply devotional. The seed is good; this is a book worth planting. --Rosalynde Welch --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

About the Author

Adam S. Miller is a professor of philosophy at Collin College in McKinney, Texas. He is the author of Badiou, Marion, and St Paul: Immanent Grace; Rube Goldberg Machines: Essays in Mormon Theology; Speculative Grace: Bruno Latour and Object-Oriented Theology; and Letters to a Young Mormon. He also serves as director of the Mormon Theology Seminar. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

Product Details

  • Age Range: 1 - 17 years
  • Grade Level: 1 and up
  • Paperback: 112 pages
  • Publisher: Salt Press LLC (October 27, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0983963606
  • ISBN-13: 978-0983963608
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.2 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,949,732 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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More About the Author

Adam S. Miller is a professor of philosophy at Collin College in McKinney, Texas and the author of six books. He earned a BA in Comparative Literature from Brigham Young University and a MA and PhD in Philosophy from Villanova University. His first four books were written for academic audiences and they explore, from a variety of perspectives, new ways of thinking about "grace" as an ordinary, this-worldly phenomenon. His fifth book, "Letters to a Young Mormon," is the first to be written and published for a general audience. His newest book, "Grace Is Not God's Backup Plan" is also intended for a popular audience.

Miller is co-editor a series of books for the Neal A. Maxwell Institute for Religious Scholarship at Brigham Young University entitled "Groundwork: Studies in Theory and Scripture" and serves as the director of the Mormon Theology Seminar. He was a co-owner and co-founder of Salt Press, a promising independent press recently acquired by the Maxwell Institute.

Miller has been interviewed about his academic work on public radio and a variety of podcasts. He blogs at the "Times and Seasons," "The Church and Postmodern Culture," and "Speculative Non-Buddhism" websites. He participates regularly in regional, national, and international conferences that address religious themes. He has organized three professional conferences. He has published more than twenty articles, reviews, and essays in a variety of journals and venues and delivered more than forty conference presentations since earning his doctorate in 2005. He was named "Best Essayist" in 2011 by the Association for Mormon Letters.

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Format: Paperback
This book is a collection of six papers presented at the first Mormon Theological Seminar (MTS). The Mormon Theological Seminar is a group of Mormon scholars who study scripture closely and charitably. This collection of essays does what other books in the field of Mormon studies are not most often not doing, reading "Mormon scripture theologically rather than historically, doctrinally, or devotionally" (1). The Mormon Theological Seminar proves that Mormons can congruently be faithful members of the Church and theologians. I see the agenda of the book being to challenge the reader to do exactly what Alma 32 challenges its reader to do, to experiment upon the word. Adam Miller, editor and founder of the MTS, added that "to experiment upon the word is to experience the word" (15). It is this invitation that I see as the agenda of the book. I read the book with this on my mind.

The audience most suited for this book is one who has at least an elementary understanding of The Book of Mormon. An understanding of popular Mormon doctrines, and ideas, is not required. However, a mind already familiar with the text under discussion will have an easier time following the various presentations and their subtle nuances. With that said, whether an individual has read through the text once, twice, or one-hundred times, that individual is sure to glean an additional understanding of The Book of Mormon and of faith in particular.

With the possible exception of James E. Faulconer, Chair of Religious Understanding at Brigham Young University, contributors to An Experiment on the Word are chiefly made up scholars unknown to the general membership of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
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This is the type of book I had been looking for everyone. One that would expound upon the teachings of BOM in a critical analysis of the doctrine being taught within its pages and relate it to a modern understanding of the nature of faith and knowledge.
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By Jean Atwood on September 15, 2015
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Enjoyed reading and looking at Alma 32 through different lens.
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