Podcast #11: Joseph Smith and Polygamy: An Interview with Brian Hales

In this important episode, Russell Stevenson sits down with historian Brian Hales, author of the three-volume series, Joseph Smith and Polygamy We talk about the concept of “dynastic marriage,” sexuality in Joseph Smith’s plural marriages, and the Women Who Told Joseph Smith “No.” Hales offers his own feelings and concerns about polygamy and helps Saints navigate their way through the confusing–and ambiguous–documentary trail. Listen in!


One comment on “Podcast #11: Joseph Smith and Polygamy: An Interview with Brian Hales

  1. Will Roberts says:

    “I argue that if Brigham Young, John Taylor, Zina Huntington, Emily Partridge, Eliza R. Snow – if any of these people who knew what was going on had thought that he was a hypocrite, they wouldn’t have stayed with him.”

    Brian, you need to stop making this argument. Besides the fact that there were many who did think that JS was a hypocrite and left the church (think of William Law and those associated with him and the Nauvoo Expositor, for example), it is a well-established principle of psychology that when someone has a long-held belief that defines who they are, when they are presented with data that contradicts their belief, they will actually strengthen their belief in that thing. This is called the backfire effect.

    It is *expected* that many people would still follow Joseph Smith, even though they were given evidence that he was a hypocrite. It would be strange from a scientific standpoint if they didn’t.

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