"Editors' Introduction, Fall 2010"

Editorial Board, SquareTwo Journal

SquareTwo, Vol. 3 No. 3 (Fall 2010)






           There is something for everyone in the Fall 2010 issue of SquareTwo! Our lead article, by Roger Barrus, discusses "The Mormon Problem"--that is, whether and how the principle of continuing revelation can co-exist with the principle of republican democracy. In a historical tour de force, Barrus takes us through the tensions these two principles caused among the early Saints, as well as between the early Saints and their non-member fellow citizens. Barrus asserts that when Church and state were not separated in the early days, explosive conflict ensued within the community of Saints, which was instrumental in inciting the expulsions that followed. Barrus ends his essay by considering the lessons of this history for contemporary LDS Church-state relations.

Lindsey Hulet takes on an explosive issue of her own: the increasing prevalence of cosmetic surgery among Latter-day Saint women in United States. What does it mean that Salt Lake City was recently named the "vainest" city in the US, according to the prevalence of cosmetic surgeries? What reasons do LDS women give for undertaking or refusing to undertake cosmetic surgery? How is it that LDS women would never have more than one ear piercing, but would contemplate liposuction and a "mommy makeover"? Hulet provides a comprehensive overview of how this issue has evolved within LDS culture.

Joseph Spencer reopens the question of whether postmodernism and Mormonism overlap to any degree. He concludes that the overlap is less than that imagined by others with the LDS community, and that the LDS project might constitute more of a "second modernity project."

In this issue of SquareTwo, we have a pair of essays concerning women in Utah higher education. The first, by Stephen Cranney, provides an empirical analysis of new survey research on Brigham Young University undergraduates, demonstrating that while females and males are indistinguishable in terms of GPA distribution, that women are less likely to graduate, less likely to consider postsecondary education, and less likely to anticipate they will have a higher salary after college. The second paper, by Susan Madsen and her colleagues, also notes the declining participation of Utah women in higher education, and notes also that compared to national averages, Utah women are much less likely to be involved in educational programs in the STEM field. Both papers provide a call for further investigation of how it is possible that in a culture where both women and men are strongly encouraged to get an education, women seem to lag behind their male counterparts to a degree not seen otherwise in the United States.

Steven Goold reflects on the immigration debate brewing in Utah, and examines LDS General Authority statements on the subject over time. Is there an LDS position on illegal immigration? Goold also reflects on the recent Utah Compact, and its implications for LDS thought on this controversial issue.

Finally, we present our readers' comments on "The Blessing Dilemma," as posed in September. What do the words of blessings mean? Ten of our readers, including two members of our editorial board, share their thoughts.

Enjoy, and share with your family and friends the articles that capture your interest!

Full Citation for This Article: Editorial Board, SquareTwo Journal (2010) "Editors' Introduction, Fall 2010," SquareTwo, Vol. 3 No. 3 (Fall), http://squaretwo.org/Sq2ArticleEditorIntroFall2010.html, accessed [give access date].

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