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About At the Pulpit

At the Pulpit: 185 Years of Discourses by Latter-day Saint Women presents transcripts of fifty-four discourses given by Latter-day Saint women from 1831 to 2016, with selections from every decade over that span of time. The discourses encompass everything from discussions at early Relief Society meetings to formal remarks at Latter-day Saint general conferences. While many types of “pulpits” exist in Latter-day Saint culture, the discourses in this collection were delivered primarily in institutional church settings, and many of the talks were reprinted in church magazines and conference reports. With their selections, the editors tried to represent many of the varied ways that Mormon women have addressed public audiences. The selections also demonstrate change over time, such as in rhetorical style and the ways discourses were recorded.

After collecting and reviewing hundreds of discourses, the editors chose engaging talks that focused on doctrinal themes, rather than talks that recounted or represented historically significant moments. The editors prioritized speeches that were well written, that contained theological analysis, and that illustrated women’s faith throughout the years since the church’s founding in 1830. Some women featured in this collection were well known in their day, and some of them are known to today’s readers. Others were, until now, obscure and largely forgotten. The discourses are arranged in chronological order by the date they were given.

Introductions and annotation provide insight into the biographical, historical, theological, and cultural context of each talk. In addition to being a scholarly history, this collection provides a resource for contemporary church members as they study, speak, teach, and lead. 

About the Church Historian's Press

The Church Historian’s Press was announced in 2008 by the Church History Department of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The Joseph Smith Papers was the first publication to bear the imprint. The press publishes works of Latter-day Saint history that meet high standards of scholarship. For more information, visit the Church Historian’s Press website.