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I think I’m gonna like it here

June 16, 2014

The washer and dryer are down the hall.

Inside the house?? Oh, boy!!


Today was our first day of the Mormon Studies Summer Seminar (which I’m tagging SumSem) at the Neal A. Maxwell Institute with Claudia and Richard Bushman. The focus for this summer’s seminar is the family in Mormon culture. Various people have expressed an interest in the seminar, and so I decided that for them and for my own recordkeeping, I’d blog about it from time to time. If there are specific things you’d like to hear about, let me know in the comments.

I believe there are 12 of us in the group, and I’m already really enjoying these people. We’ve got historians and social scientists and philosophers and a number of people interested in Mormon feminist and women’s studies [happy grin]. I’m the only person studying English, and some have done much more with academic Mormon studies than I have, so I hope I can keep up. Lots of reading for tomorrow, so I’ll sign off pretty soon.

But there really is a washer and dryer INSIDE MY APARTMENT. Don’t even get me started on the dishwasher and central air.


Today’s reading
Tamara K. Hareven, “The History of the Family and the Complexity of Social Change,” The American Historical Review Vol. 96, No. 1 (Feb., 1991), pp. 95-124.


We each chose one of the following studies (I read Greven’s book):
John Demos, Little Commonwealth: Family Life in Plymouth Colony
Philippe Ariés, Centuries of Childhood: A Social History of Family Life
Philip J. Greven, The Protestant Temperament: Patterns of Child-Rearing, Religious Experience and the Self in Early America



“I think it’s really hard to make rules about the family.” – Claudia

“There are idea-driven papers and source-driven papers. You need a source-driven paper in this case because then you have something to work with. Otherwise, it’s all idea-driven, and you’re hunting for a needle in a haystack, and you don’t have time for that here.” – Richard

“The trick is that you’ll write the paper while you do the research. You don’t do all the research first and then write the paper…you write while the ideas are fresh.” – Richard


Claudia told us at our group dinner last night that she’s working on her autobiography, and here’s the best part: she’s calling it I, Claudia.

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