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A Sympathetic but Flawed Look at Book of Mormon Historicity

TitleA Sympathetic but Flawed Look at Book of Mormon Historicity
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2021
AuthorsGardner, Brant A.
JournalInterpreter: A Journal of Latter-day Saint Faith and Scholarship
KeywordsBook of Mormon Geography; Book of Mormon Geography - Mesoamerica; Historicity; Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints

Terrence O’Leary enters the field of books attempting to describe a geographical and cultural background to the Book of Mormon. Placing the action of the text in Mesoamerica, O’Leary explains the Book of Mormon against his understanding of the geography and therefore culture of the Book of Mormon peoples. He begins with the Jaredites, then moves to the Nephites and Mulekites. Along the way, he uses historical data to back up his ideas. While I agree with much of what he has written in principle, his lack of expertise in the cultures of Mesoamerica leads to times when he incorrectly uses some of his sources.