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Work in Religious Studies

"Quoted at the Pulpit: Male Rhetoric and Female Authority in Fifty Years in General Conference," in Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought vol 55, no. 4 (Winter 2022).

This article explores women's position in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints through quantitative and qualitative analysis of quotation practices in the Church's biannual General Conference between 1971-2021. Because quotation is a rhetorical practice that relies on a speaker’s audience finding the quotation’s source authoritative, I argue that frequency of quotation in General Conference is an indication of a source’s perceived authority in the Latter-day Saint community. Women’s representation in Conference quotation practices is extremely low among all groups of speakers. This is the case quantitatively, in terms of actual citation numbers, and qualitatively, as seen in verbal presentation of women as sources and the context in which women are quoted. This data indicates that, despite stated commitments to gender equality, Church leaders perceive women as having little authority. 

Check out this interview, this podcast, or this article to learn more about the project! 

”Feminist Ethics of Care as Latter-day Saint Ethics.” in The Restoration of Latter-day 

     Saint Thought: Essays on Mormon Philosophy, Theology, and Scripture, Rosalynde 

     Welch, Joseph Spencer & Nathan B. Oman (eds.). University of Illinois Press, forthcoming. 

This essay argues that the distinctive theological commitments of the Mormon tradition support a model of moral agency and moral obligation that resonates with the commitments of feminist ethics of care. Care ethicists have defended relational accounts of moral agency that focus on the importance of embodiment and situatedness in moral reasoning; Mormon theology presents an embodied, relational God as the moral ideal for human beings. I argue that fully committing to the care ethics framework already implicit in Mormon theology and scripture could support emancipatory approaches to the Church's teachings on gender, sexuality, and global justice. Please reach out for a draft.

I continue work on these topics as the Theology Feature Editor for the Exponent II magazine, a feminist space for women and gender minorities across the Mormon spectrum.

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