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TitlePlural Marriage: Beauty for Ashes
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2022
AuthorsRussell, Julia A.
JournalInterpreter: A Journal of Latter-day Saint Faith and Scholarship
KeywordsFeminism; Plural Marriage; Polygamy; Smith, Joseph, Jr.; Snow, Eliza R.

When Eliza R. Snow agreed to become one of Joseph Smith’s plural wives, she feared she would never be looked upon as a decent woman. Nevertheless, she accepted Joseph Smith’s proposal and eventually became a strong advocate of the practice. Reading about her understanding of plural marriage and the many testimonies of others who practiced it, I have realized that plural marriage teaches us much about humility, keeping God’s commandments, and following His prophets. In nineteenth-century America, it provided a way for women and men to set aside self and embark on a soul-refining journey filled with trials and obstacles that parallel many of the trials and obstacles of our day.