Rendering the Ineffable Effable: Treating Joseph Smith’s First Vision in Imaginative Literature

The First Vision is integral to the story of the Latter-day Saints and to their very existence as a people. Repeated and heartfelt recitations of the event, together with testimonies sought, gained, and uttered regarding its divinity, have gradually transformed the First Vision into the a profound story that presents direction and provides a theory about how the world works. The following survey of LDS poetry, drama, and fiction about the First Vision demonstrates how the Vision continues to reverberate among the Latter-day Saints and how it serves not only as a foundational document and doctrinal exegesis but increasingly also as a springboard to personal and universal revelation commensurate to the spiritual needs of those generations of Saints that did not know Joseph.

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