Article of the Week

Of Contrasts, Apologies, and Authenticity: The First Visions of Joseph Smith and Ellen White in Comparison
Monday, July 27, 2020

Of Contrasts, Apologies, and Authenticity: The First Visions of Joseph Smith and Ellen White in Comparison

Today we are featuring, "Of Contrasts, Apologies, and Authenticity: The First Visions of Joseph Smith and Ellen White in Comparison," from journal 59:2. Below is the abstract. Follow the link below for the full article. 

Joseph Smith’s and Ellen White’s “first visions” each lie at the heart of their respective major American religious movements: Smith’s 1820 vision for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and White’s 1844 vision for the Seventh-day Adventists. David F. Holland works to avoid the artificial categories and apologetic rhetoric of religious comparison while considering the similarities in Smith’s and White’s transitions from teenaged visionaries to the founders of enduring religious traditions. Through comparison, Holland highlights each vision’s differences: timing and cohesiveness of published accounts, spiritual phenomena within the visions, and the historical context for White’s communal focus and Smith’s personal one. However, even through these comparisons, neither vision proves to be superior in authenticity or visionary artistry.