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Daniel Peterson

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  • Birthday 01/13/1912

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  1. I confess to being surprised at reported difficulty in telling Oliver Cowdery, Martin Harris, Joseph Smith, and David Whitmer -- and the younger and older David Whitmer? -- apart. That would never have occurred to me, and puzzles me considerably. They don't look anything alike, and their mannerisms are quite distinct. And I see the characters as changing considerably over the course of the film. Obviously, though, people can see the movie and judge for themselves.
  2. Bob: Thanks for your review, and for calling my attention to it. We could, I suppose, debate whether the film's depictions of Oliver Cowdery, Martin Harris, and David Whitmer are nuanced in precisely the correct way -- I'm personally happy with the portrayals -- but I'm fine with the fact that we view them differently. Other than that, I'm quite serene if the filmmakers failed to accurately show the precise number of millimeters between the hat and Joseph's face or accidentally got the color of the hat wrong. (I myself have argued in writing that the hat was used to exclude ambient light, but I wouldn't be a bit surprised if, over the long daily hours of dictation, Joseph placed the hat -- and himself -- in various positions.) Much bigger historical issues than those seem to be at stake here. Incidentally, the film places a screen between Joseph and Martin, but not between Joseph and Oliver.
  3. The second fax was definitely NOT a fraud.
  4. Your requirements are rigid and unjustifiable. I've already given examples above of leading academic figures -- two Nobel laureate scientists and a widely respected Mesoamerican archaeologist -- who lack university positions. And now, as to the matter of degrees: The great Anglo-American historian Peter Brown (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peter_Brown_(historian)) doesn't even have a doctorate. Yet I once sat in on a doctoral defense at Princeton University for which he served on the committee. (Such examples can easily be multiplied.)
  5. https://journal.interpreterfoundation.org/a-uni-dimensional-picture-of-a-multi-faceted-nauvoo-community/
  6. With all due respect, it's a nonsensical point: "I know Chinese, and their Chinese stinks." "Have you ever heard them speak Chinese or read anything that they've written in Chinese?" "No." "Have you ever read anything that they've translated from Chinese?" "No." "Do you actually know anything at all about their Chinese?" "No." "And yet you know that their Chinese stinks?" "Yup. You got my point."
  7. BC: "I think that an academic ought to work (or have retired from) an academic department to be trusted as an expert." I'll pass over your debatable assumption that BYU Ancient Scripture isn't an academic department and your false assumption that nobody in Ancient Scripture is a legitimate academic in order to flatly contradict your notion that nobody who hasn't worked in an academic department can be trusted as an expert. I'll give you just three manifest counterexamples: (1) Peter D. Mitchell, an independent British biochemist who worked in his own self-funded research institute and who won the 1978 Nobel Prize in Chemistry. (2) Luis Leloir, an Argentine physician and biochemist who funded and directed the private Fundación Instituto Campomar and who received the 1970 Nobel Prize in Chemistry. (3) Richard Hansen, an American anthropologist and archaeologist who directs the National Geographic Society's Mirador Basin Project in northern Guatemala. BC: "I have never heard of Mr. Jackson before last week." Too bad. He's published widely on ancient Near Eastern topics and Latter-day Saint scriptural topics, for both LDS and non-LDS audiences, and very specifically on the Joseph Smith Translation.
  8. You know peer review, but you don't know our peer review, but you know that it doesn't match what you know of peer review. Got it.
  9. I know peer review, too. I've done peer review, I've been peer reviewed, and I've supervised peer review. Have you undergone peer review for an article submitted to Interpreter? Can you inform us about how Interpreter's peer review process works?
  10. BC: "I suppose that any bozo can author an article and get published by the Interpreter. " If a bozo's article fits our publishing goals and passes our peer review process, yes, any bozo can get his or her article published by Interpreter. BC: "I wonder if Mark Allan Wright is able to publish peer reviewed articles on MesoAmerica" Of course he can. Even scholars who have no academic affiliation at all can and do publish peer-reviewed articles in their fields. It's fairly common; you'll see plenty of them on the program of any moderately large academic conference. And there are some pretty solid historical examples (e.g., Michael Ventris deciphering Minoan Linear B while working as an architect, and Albert Einstein publishing his special theory of relativity while employed as a clerk in the Swiss patent office in Bern). BC: "he does not work in an academic department." To suggest that there are no trained, competent, and productive scholars in BYU Religious Education is simply, flatly, wrong. One doesn't have to be uncritical about Rel Ed to recognize that fact. BC: "I could be wrong here." You most certainly are. BC: "Dr. Peterson says that Jackson's article was "peer reviewed" but I certainly challenge that notion for a number of reasons." Do you have any sound ones? BC: "It is not "peer reviewing" in the secular sense." It's "peer reviewing" in precisely that sense. BC: "I wonder if it makes a difference that Joseph Smith relied on Adam Clarke." It wouldn't make much difference if he had -- as Kent Jackson himself says in his essay. There's just little or no actual evidence of such reliance.
  11. I'm a believer, and a former Bishop. I think Jackson's article about Clarke is both excellent and devastating. He's superbly trained. It was peer reviewed.
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