Criticism of Mormonism/Books/Early Mormonism and the Magic World View/Apologetics

The Author and LDS apologetics

A work by author: D. Michael Quinn

Throughout the revised edition, the author often refers to the efforts of LDS apologetics related to his own works. He appears to have a particular issue with a review of the first edition of Early Mormonism and the Magic World View written by LDS scholar Bill Hamblin. This page addresses specific claims made by the author related to LDS apologetics.


The author claims that apologists "extend the broadest possible latitude to sources they agree with, yet impose the most stringent demands on sources of information the apologists dislike."

 FAIR WIKI EDITORS: Check sources


The author refers to "a deceptive statement by FARMS polemicist Louis Midgley" and refers to the "fundamental dishonesty" of his claim.
  • The author states, "In my opinion, Midgley is an LDS polemicist without scruples..."

Author's source(s)
  • Midgley, "F.M. Brodie—'The Fasting Hermit and Very Saint of Ignorance': A Biographer and Her Legend," FARMS Review of Books, FARMS, 19967, no. 2:225n287.
  • Midgley, "Playing with Half a Decker: The Countercult Religious Tradition Confronts the Book of Mormon," Review of Books on the Book of Mormon, FARMS, 5:144n56 (1993).
  • The author is making a personal attack on Dr. Midgley—this is the type of behavior that critics often accuse FARMS of.
  • The statement that the author takes issue with is this:

There are no newspaper accounts, letters or diaries that hint that Joseph Smith as 'farm boy' was a 'treasure' seeker prior to the publication of such charges by Obadiah [sic] Dogberry (aka Abner Cole) beginning in June and July 1830."

  • The author claims that there is a "fundamental dishonesty" in the above statement because Dr. Midgley three years earlier had claimed to have read articles by Madsen, Wesley Walters, and Marvin Hill "about the manuscript documents of this 1826 court action against the treasure-seeking of Joseph Smith, the farm boy."