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American Prophet: The Story of Joseph Smith Hardcover – September 1, 1999
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American Prophet: The Story Of Joseph Smith offers a fascinating portrait of a man whose name has indeed been had for good and evil among all nations. As the church he founded on American soil has grown to a membership exceeding ten million in 160-plus countries around the globe, his work has been scrutinized, acclaimed, ridiculed, investigated, applauded, belittled, embraced, and rejected. His story is one of remarkable achievement as well as horrific persecution that ultimately led to his murder by a mob in 1844. Historians may disagree as to his motives and his experiences, but no one questions the significance of his accomplishments.
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If you want an in depth study of the life of Joseph Smith, buy No Man Knows My History, 2nd Edition, by Brodie or for a fascinating psychological study, Inside the Mind of Joseph Smith by Robert D. Anderson. If you want a neutral evaluation of the Mormon church as a whole, I recommend Mormon America bye Richard and Joan Ostling. It you want a propaganda coffee table book, buy this one.
By the way, who is the guy who is pictured on the dustjacket? The cover pictures a handsome, all-American man, but open the book and look at actual period pictures and Smith is a round, odd-looking guy, not at all like the artwork pictured throughout the book.
For some reason the editor didn't mention what was the content of the Nauvoo Expositor, or why it was so dangerous for Smith. Polygamy was also not addressed in any detail.
Smith comes off as an unreal man who always had the misfortune of being victimized by "bad" people.
Has history ever been this simple? Strange.