Podcast #5 -The History of Homosexuality and Mormonism

In this special episode, Russell Stevenson and Brittney Nielson delve into one of the most controversial topics of our times: homosexuality.   During the first half, they discuss the history of homosexuality in the Mormon tradition and homosexuals’ struggles to find a place within it. The second half is an interview with two of Mormonism’s most interesting and, at times, controversial voices on LGBT issues: Ty and Danielle Mansfield.  We discuss the nature of their relationship and how they make it “work” (and, as you will find, “work” really is a poor word for their marital dynamic). They explain what love means to them and how their approach to sexuality fits within the Mormon tradition.


Podcast #4: Mormons and the Environment

In this episode, Russell Stevenson and Kate Harline explore Mormonism’s fascinating interactions with the environment and environmentalist thought.  Unlike many Christian denominations, Mormonism has a mixed and complicated message, as it has endeavored to uphold its principles of stewardship over the material world while still navigating the American and world economy as a minority religious movement.  Stop by for an engaging conversation about stewardship, industrialization, and the need for Mormons to rediscover their environment-centered theology.


Podcast #3 – History of Mormon Dance

In this podcast, Russell Stevenson and Kate Harline discuss an aspect of Mormon cultural art that is easy to overlook: dancing.   Though seemingly recreational, Mormon dance in fact highlights deeper issues in the development of Mormon identity: theologically, sexually, and even racially.  They analyze how Mormon dance has served as a cultural “contact zone” between the Mormon community and outsiders.  They also interview Katherine Winder, a full-time professional Mormon dancer from the Repertory Dance Theater of Salt Lake City.  She tells how she came to be a dancer, how her faith informs her art, and her touching experiences as a dance instructor in a leper colony in India.  Join us for this compelling exploration of the Mormon people have used dance both to celebrate and control their bodies over the past 180 years.


Podcast #2: Race and the Priesthood

In this podcast, Kate Kelly Harline takes on the role of interviewer and discusses Russell Stevenson (author of Black Mormon: The Story of Elijah Ables and author of the forthcoming, For the Cause of Righteousness: A Documentary History of Blacks and Mormonism,  1830-2013). We discuss the meaning and ramifications of the LDS Church’s new statement on “Race and the Priesthood.”  Obviously, we present this perspective from the perspective of historical analysis.  Towards the end of my recent interview on RadioWest, one of my co-hosts specifically distanced himself from that perspective, and I respect his right to do so.  However, as the statement was an historical statement, we have little choice but to employ historical methods in assessing it–even if it does not fit neatly into talking points or agendas. We trace the origins, course, and trajectory of the Saints’ relationship with the black community and racial exclusion. Tune in for the conversation at the Mormon History Guy podcast.

War – Mormon History Guy Show – Episode 1

In this pilot episode, Russell Stevenson and Kate Harline discuss the historical undergirdings for the Mormon position on war.  Drawing on Mormon scripture and various episodes of Mormon armed conflict, they show that the Saints’ views on war have been more ambivalent than contemporary Mormon assumptions might suggest. Stay tuned for more.

For Hosea Stout’s 1846 response to the Mexican-American war, see here.

For the First Presidency’s 1942 statement on war, see here.

For Spencer W. Kimball’s 1976 condemnation of the military-industrial complex, see here.