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Race and the Making of the Mormon People$
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Max Perry Mueller

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9781469636160

Published to North Carolina Scholarship Online: January 2018

DOI: 10.5149/northcarolina/9781469636160.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM UNIVERSITY OF NORTH CAROLINA PRESS SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.northcarolina.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of North Carolina Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in NCSO for personal use.date: 23 May 2022

The Book of Mormon

The Book of Mormon

A (White) Universal Gospel

(p.31) 1 The Book of Mormon
Race and the Making of the Mormon People

Max Perry Mueller

University of North Carolina Press

This chapter examines the Book of Mormon's racial theology of “white universalism.” It explores the supposed pre-Columbian history that the Book of Mormon contains, notably the origins of Native Americans as a remnant of Israelites called the “Lamanites.” It also explores the future that the Book of Mormon prophesies in which the Lamanites unify with believing “Gentiles” to become one “white and a delightsome” people and together build a New Jerusalem in America before Christ’s return. The chapter also includes an examination of the Book of Mormon prophet, “Samuel, the Lamanite.” Samuel’s case, along with other marginalized early American religious leaders like William Apess and Jerana Lee, shows that non-white Americans have a “privileged sight” onto America and America’s religious communities that fail to live up to their own ideals of inclusion and equality. The views of marginalized figures are thus essential for an accurate accounting of America’s past.

Keywords:   white universalism, narrator’s prerogative, Samuel, the Lamanite, Nephites, Lamanites, William Apess, Jerana Lee, race of the archive, Book of Mormon, privileged sight

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